The variety of kaki Rojo Brillante from Huelva bred in Moguer is the main ingredient of ice cream that has been the gold cup in the ‘Mostra del gelato “, a fair held in Italy, the Mecca of more summery dessert. To become mixed in the tastiest recipe contest, the fruit had traveled from the farm of “Las Madres” in the Sur Hortícola Company, to the warehouses of the dealer in Holland (Frankfort & Koning). The good hand and inspiration for Tom Mandemakers, a young Dutch ice-cream man, author of the winning formula, and the taste of “kakis de Huelva” made the perfect combination.

Pioneer Plantation
Originally from China and Japan (etymologically, Kaki comes from the Japanese), this fruit has adapted successfully to the mild climate of the coast of Huelva. Mature during the summer and begins to collect in late September (the variety Rojo Brillante) or November (Sharon). Spend the field handling facilities where it is carefully selected, analyzed, astringency was removed to make it eatable and stored for later be transported in refrigerated trucks to the target market. The annual campaign extends for about five months.

This is the process followed by Sur Hortícola, one of the pioneers of Spanish producers, who put his first planting of persimmons in 1989 on the farm “Las Madres” of Moguer. Antonio Medina, “the father of the strawberries’ in Huelva (Favorite Son of Andalusia and creditor of the Grand Cross of Agricultural Merit) founded the agricultural enterprise in the 50s and introduced the best varieties and revolutionary techniques of Californian culture, which, ultimately, would trigger the frantic race of the strawberry in Huelva, today the biggest producer.

The cultivation of persimmon or kaki come after the need for diversification and Innovation vocation of Antonio Medina, who imported the Israelites culture methods for these new fruit. Today, already under the plow Antonio Jesús Medina’s second generation of the familiar company, Sur Hortícola is one of the leading producers and exporters of kakis in Spanish varieties of Rojo Brillante (which is booming) and Sharon, with more 170 acres of active production.

SUR HORTICOLA produces more than 6 million kilos per year and allocates 80% of its production to the German and Dutch markets. In the medium term, plans to increase this volume to 10 million tons “to provide a demand that has grown exponentially over the last decade, and improve our chances of trading in new markets,” says Antonio Jesús Medina.

Little known in Spain, kaki is gradually entering the markets. The good growth prospects are unleashing a “boom” in other producing areas such as Valencia, where orange trees are starting whose profitability has fallen sharply in recent years and planting kakis.

Other crops
On the other hand, SUR HORTICOLA (which are part subsidiaries Rain Fields and Rain Lakes) is a leader in production of green ornamental cutting, such as leather fern, whose leaves harvested manually and only collects request to ensure freshness. With all this, has more than 300 hectares in operation. The importation and adaptation of other tropical greens cut, developing and marketing culture tests with hydrangeas cut and potted, or protea plantations are other lines of work of the company. Its range of crops takes place in several farms in Huelva and southern Portugal. In the Portuguese farms is dedicated to flowers and decorative greens.

The Huelvan company sells its products to a dozen countries and make an average of 250 jobs a year.

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