Dole Food Co. said it has bought TucFrut farms and packing facilities in Chile to boost the volume and variety of its fresh fruit products.
Westlake Village, California-based Dole didn’t disclose terms of the deal, but said the acquisition will strengthen the company’s current product portfolio with premium apple varieties and kiwifruit. It also will provide the Dole’s first own production of Chilean blueberries.
“With the acquisition of TucFrut we are strengthening our leadership of Dole’s Chilean deciduous export business and diversified fruit operations,” Dole President and Chief Operating Officer Johan Linden said in a statement. “Dole Chile has been a success story for Dole since the 1980s based on our grower supply and a worldwide distribution under the Dole label.”
The deal also gives the company farmland that has yet to be developed for production.
Located 140 miles south of Santiago in the Molina and Linares areas of Chile, the TucFrut property consists of five farms spread over 2,400 acres that produces apples, blueberries and kiwifruit on more than 1,600 acres.
“A large portion of the farm is yet to be planted and we intend to plant varieties that will satisfy our customers’ needs in the years to come,” said Francisco Chacon, president of Dole Diversified Fruit Operations. “The TucFrut fruit farms acquisition is the most visible part of our growth in Chile this year.”
The company said the acquisition is aligned with its plan to invest and upgrade its packing and post-harvest infrastructure as well as improve grower services. In addition to the TucFrut acquisition, Dole recently added three additional grape farms totaling over 600 hectares to its long-term grape suppliers.