MOROCCO – Driscoll’s Maroc has initiated the construction of a soft fruit conditioning plant in the Loukkos agropole, south of Larache, marking a crucial step in growing the region’s economic landscape.

With a budget of approximately 150 million dirhams (USD 40.8 million), this venture promises not only to enhance the province of Larache but also to foster job creation, particularly benefiting the local populace.

The inauguration ceremony, led by the governor of Larache province, Bouassam El Alamine, signifies a promising venture for both Driscoll’s and the local community.

The construction of the conditioning plant, spanning over 5 hectares, underscores Driscoll’s commitment to Morocco’s agricultural sector.

Driscoll’s investment in Morocco highlights the conducive business environment and the collaborative efforts between private entities and local authorities.

The project’s realization owes much to the continuous support from regional bodies, such as the Regional Investment Center of the Tangier-Tetouan-Al Hoceima Region (CRITTA), facilitating a seamless integration into the region’s economic framework.

“The support, professionalism, advice, and ability to anticipate our needs have been determining factors for the success of the project,” stated a representative from Driscoll’s.

The commendable assistance provided by CRITTA, from initial prospecting to securing permits, underscores the synergy between public and private sectors.

Driscoll’s longstanding presence in Morocco exemplifies its commitment to global expansion. The company’s investment in Larache, coupled with its existing facilities in Moulay Bousselham and Agadir, reflects its enduring dedication to the Moroccan market.

Moroccan soft fruit season

As the next season of Moroccan soft fruit unfolds, it turns out that the landscape of red berry production is undergoing significant shifts, influenced by both environmental and market-driven factors. 

According to Nabil Babache, a representative of the Larache based exporter Rika, Last year, the industry faced low prices and relatively modest volumes, leading to strategic shifts in the supply chain.

Certain seed companies reduced the number of growers they supplied with berry seeds, resulting in fewer growers involved in berry cultivation this season.

The Agadir region, which experienced strong winds damaging greenhouses and scorching heat, is expected to have a dip in production. However, the northern region remains unaffected, with output likely to mirror last year’s.

Moreover, the reduction in cultivated area is likely to be offset by higher prices. The industry anticipates a surge in demand, hinting at potential upward pressure on prices.

The reduction in cultivated area is likely to be offset by higher prices. The industry anticipates a surge in demand, hinting at potential upward pressure on prices.

Spain, another significant player in the berry market, is also expecting a reduction in its cultivated area. This parallel trend in two major producing countries could impact the global supply chain and pricing dynamics.

“Current projections place the 2023-2024 price at $6.76 per kg, indicating a stable and resilient future market scenario,” concluded Nabil.

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