The dairy sector will earn New Zealand about $17.5 billion in export revenue this year, and likely more next year, says Professor Graeme Doole, DairyNZ principal economist.
The award, which is based on a broad survey of consumers living in Germany aged between 18 and 65, had apparently only been won previously by vegetable products.
Zespri's marketing manager for Germany, Andreas Borgers, says they are really happy about this award, because it shows that we can inspire those who consume our products.
"Our goal for 2016 is to give more people the opportunity to try our Zespri SunGold, because taste and quality speak for themselves. Naturally that also means substantial potential sales for our trade partners," he says.
Borgers says in Germany a total of 65 promoters gave away around 165,000 individual SunGold kiwifruits to people in Dusseldorf, Hamburg and Berlin during special tasting events in May, June and July respectively.
He says these tastings were accompanied by wide-reaching PR and advertising campaigns, the latter featuring billboards, radio and television spots, collaborations with print and online media, social media promotions and other tactics described intriguingly by the company as 'guerilla activities'.