Seedless mandarins to hit supermarket shelves

Jan. 10, 2019 | 5 Min read
SEEDLESS mandarins could hit supermarket shelves in the next two years. One of Australia’s biggest fresh produce companies, Freshmax, has planted 20ha of Tangold Seedless mandarins at its Swan Hill property, with a further 20ha planned in the next 18 months.

Freshmax intellectual property and commercialisation manager Andrew Maughan said the property had historically focused on stone fruit varieties but decided to grow the seedless variety in a bid to diversify production.

“Stone fruit is a summer crop whereas citrus is winter so the diversification will therefore ensure better utilisation of staff resources,” he said.

He said stone fruit was also more sensitive to tough weather conditions such as rain and hail, whereas citrus was more resilient.

“Mandarins also produce more yield,” Mr Maughan said.

Initial commercial crops from the property are expected in 2021 and over the eight years that follow, commercial output of the property’s mandarins will reach about 2500 tonnes a year.

Danny Kim, who manages Freshmax’s Swan Hill property, said there was a global trend for easy peel and seedless citrus.

“There will still be some market segments where seeded fruit will have a place, but the demand for supply of seedless easy peel is certain to increase as more fruit becomes available,” he said.

He said seedless citrus was replicating what had been seen in the table grape and watermelon categories.

To maintain a seedless characteristic, the Tangold Seedless mandarins do not require netting or isolation.

“As a result, growers can more easily produce citrus fruit that meets consumers increasing expectations on flavour and seed count,” Mr Maughan said.

The crop will be heading to stores and wholesale floors sold domestically but will also play a significant role off shore and overseas.

Categories Citrus