A team of 45 office-based staff from T&G – known as the ‘Envy Army’ – have been working part-time shifts at the company’s Hawke’s Bay packhouses to ensure its apples get to key global markets.
The apple had a record season in 2020, with the entire New Zealand crop sold well before the end of the year.
In 2020, 1.9 million tray carton equivalents (TCEs) of New Zealand grown Envy were sold, a 23% increase on the previous year across the United States, China and Asia.
This was part of a wider Envy sales programme of TCEs per annum, grown in both hemispheres.
T&G Global's chief executive Gareth Edgecombe says that despite the market volatility caused by Covid-19, Envy sales have remained strong and the company is moving quickly to plant new trees to meet global consumer demand.
"The strength of the brand and its orcharding qualities means growers have the potential to make over 15% return on their investment, once their orchard is at full maturity," he says.
He says that there is 'appetite' for Envy on a global scale.
"Independent research has forecast that need at at least another 25 million TCEs by 2030 to meet potential consumer demand, especially in China, Vietnam, Thailand and the United States.
"Recent planting will soon produce another 10 million TCEs per annum and we're investing in market development programmes and further supply growth to make the most of the brand's significant long-term potential," Edgecumbe says.
"This season's sales reinforce the global demand we're seeing for the brand. As a result of Envy selling out early in the season, our sales team had to scramble to move product around to keep our retail programmes going for as long as possible. This positioned us well for a strong start to our northern hemisphere growing season," he says.
In November 2020, T&G won Marketing Campaign of the Year at the Asia Fruit Logistics 2020 Awards for its marketing activities for its Envy and Jazz apple brands.