South American fresh produce and marketing company, Inversiones Vecs SpA (VECS), and leading Australasian produce exporter, Te Mata Exports, have entered into a partnership agreement for the supply of key produce lines into Asia.
This is part of an expansion and growth strategy for both companies. Chile based VECS will have better access to the Asian market for the fresh produce they procure and pack, while Te Mata Exports will strengthen their supply base and be able to provide their Asian customers with access to top quality fruit, including Chilean cherries and Peruvian blueberries and grapes.
The connection between the partners pre-dates the establishment of both organisations, with VECS Managing Directors, Felipe Rodriguez and Ignacio Smith having a long-standing trusted relationship with Te Mata Exports CEO, Sarah McCormack and Executive Director Paul Sheffer.
“Our fellow Managing Director, Felipe, and I have known and worked with Sarah McCormack and Paul Scheffer for many years,” says VECS Managing Director, Ignacio Smith, “For us, it made sense for us to team up with them to help execute our strategy to expand our customer base across Asia by leveraging their extensive roster of international customers.”
“Te Mata Exports has a proven track record supplying key customers across Asia with products such as grapes, citrus, cherries and apples from Australia and NZ, so it was a natural next step for us to expand our supply base by sourcing products from South America to be able to add to our offering.” says Sarah McCormack, Te Mata Exports CEO. “Having Ignacio, Felipe and Gerd on the ground working with local growers, combined with their long experience in the industry means we can provide our customers with all the information they require and they can have confidence in the product they are ordering.”
Established in Chile in 2019 by experienced produce executives Ignacio Smith and Felipe Rodriguez, VECS offers a wide range of procurement and commercial services for the fresh produce industry. Since its foundation, VECS has marketed approximately 10,000 MT of fruit (cherries, blueberries, apples, pears, avocados, grapes, citrus fruits, plums, nectarines, kiwis and mangoes) from Chile, Peru and Argentina to multiple destinations including the USA, Canada, Portugal, the Netherlands, Malta, Cyprus, China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Korea, Thailand, Singapore and Vietnam. This volume has been commercialized mainly through the 4 clients that the company represents in Chile and Peru (Faikee Fruit and Zelun Trading from China, Blue Whale SAS from France and Te Mata Exports from NZ/Australia), although the company also works with other importers from various countries. In addition, the company, in partnership with the Italian group Spreafico, is involved in providing a cherry packing service to export growers in Chile.
Te Mata Exports
Te Mata Exports (Te Mata) is a trusted business, specialising in the export of quality fresh produce sourced from around the Southern Hemisphere. Established in the Hawke's Bay region of New Zealand, Te Mata Exports is renowned for exporting top quality local apples, but also specialises in cherries, citrus and vegetables. In recent years Te Mata has expanded, including the addition of an Australia produce business which focuses on exporting grapes and citrus and is expanding its supply-base to include South America. Te Mata Exports is built on relationships and real connections. Their extensive industry knowledge and experience in the Asian market, combined with longstanding relationships allow them to provide a high level of service to international customers. Te Mata Exports largest shareholder is Market Gardeners Ltd, trading as MG, with the grower-owned co-operative owning a 74% stake in the business. MG represents over 400 grower shareholders and is New Zealand’s leading supplier of top-quality produce. The balance of Te Mata’s shares are held within the management team.
Image: Sarah McCormack (Te Mata Exports CEO) and Ignacio Smith (VECS Managing Director)