The fresh produce market demands quality and will make or break a supplier on what they can deliver. PNG growers produce quality vegetables, but, sadly, also have quite a share of more mediocre product.. How well the produce is regarded depends very much on who you are talking to, their perceptions, and especially what their experience is with higher quality produce. These qualitative assessments make it quite hard to get an accurate picture and get any messages for improvement back down the line.
Fresh produce quality standards for many types of produce are well documented by several agricultural, health and trade organisations, see UNECE , CODEX, and USDA . Largely though, these stop short of linking the standards to practical measures needed to achieve the standards.
A set of quality standards backed by the methodologies to deliver on these will guide suppliers in growing, not only their produce but also their market share and profits. So...how should this work?
Now that is a big question .... We address this and look at solutions in our elearn course - "Building success in vegetable marketing". .
One of the outputs of this couirse is the development of quality frameworks to guide farmers and other stakeholders in growing and marketing of fresh produce items:
Sample quality guide framework for Tomatoes Characteristic Quality assessment criteria Production considerations Post Harvest considerations Puffiness Firmness Moisture content Colour Flesh seed ratio scarring / marks pest damage Smell, taste Degree of ripening mixed ripe packaging
Contact Laurie for more info on providing the elearn or workshop opportunity to your organisation.