Although Trecoop is capable of producing 30 million kg of fruit, this campaign the supplies will fall by about 20% to 25 million kilos due to the low winter temperatures that have noticeably reduced the different varieties of fruit.
Thus, the co-operative from Lérida is expecting production of 15 million kg of pear varieties and about 10 million kg of stone fruit (peaches, nectarines, Saturn peaches and flat nectarines).
As regards pears, Trecoop produces 6 million kg of the Williams variety, which is produced from July to November. This variety has been highly prized when fresh since the EU uncoupled aid to industry related to it. Brazil is a very important market for this item.
The Limonera pear, which is one of the main varieties offered by the Catalan company, arrives at the start of July with another 3 million kg.
Conference pears account for another 3 million kg of production and have given Trecoop worldwide fame as one of the true specialists in this variety.
“Our quality, elasticity and capacity for adaptation to the different protocols and needs of each client have given us a very good image. Our Alosa and Trecoop brands are known on the international markets,” said Trecoop general director Ignasi Gonzalez.
He highlighted the continued campaign presence in the markets of the Baltic republics, Columbia and islands such as Martinique and Reunion.
Despite Trecoop’s preparation and readiness for export, Gonzalez said that “working with the Americas must economically compensate the production work in the field, processing and logistics involved, since we are well established in the local and European markets with 70% of our sales.”
The latest investments Trecoop has made at its specialist facility in Sudanell, in Catalonia, and its Smart Fresh technology for cold chain optimisation are the main new features that this second-tier Lleida cooperative will be promoting at this edition of Fruit Logistica.
The refrigeration technology – based on the rapid transfer into cold storage of the fruit coming in from the fields so that it is prepared in perfect conditions – allows Trecoop to optimise the cold chain. It is backed up by the dynamic atmosphere chambers for long-term preservation installed by the cooperative at its Montoliu packaging facility, specialising in pears. Despite the bad weather that undermined this year’s harvest by more than 30%, Trecoop considers distant markets such as Brazil consolidated and is now putting together strategies to reach South Africa and the Middle East in the coming campaign.
The cooperative, the product of a merger of the co-ops from Montoliu de Lleida and Sudanell, has doubled its daily production capacity to almost 500 tons after remodelling its packaging centres. The growth in hectares, along with new irrigation works in the area, has helped Trecoop, which has 100 members, go from just over 1,000 ha to 1,500 ha in the last five years.
This progress prompted a restructure of its the work centres, with a view to specialising in the company’s two flagship products: pears, in Montoliu, and both round and flat stone fruit in Sudanell. With one of the largest commercial catalogues of pears (15,000 tons), the main varieties in production include the Conference, Alejandrina, Williams and Limonera.
Trecoop also produces 15,000 tons of stone fruit each season, mainly peaches, nectarines, paraguayos and flat nectarines.