BESTER FRUIT & NUTS

Bester Fruit & Nuts (BFN) became the fruit and nut export division of the BexGroup in 2015. Since 1998, the group’s exports were done through BFN, previously known as Bexport (Pty) Ltd. Mainly popcorn maize and groundnuts were exported to Denmark and Belgium. The merge with Hinterland Processing Plant opened the door for BFN to enter the pecan nut industry, instantly becoming a strong role player in the pecan export market.

Sourcing, processing and exporting are the three main functions of BFN. These functions are incorporated into a trade solution that is continuously improved to strengthen the link between farmers’ produce and the international consumer market.

Sourcing

South Africa is one of the biggest producers of pecan nuts. These nuts are mainly produced in the Vaalharts area of the Northern Cape. This area is ideal for harvesting the best quality nuts in the world due to specific climate conditions. The semidesert area’s cold winters and hot summers contribute to successful fruit growth. Pecan trees thrive in well-drained deep soil, which makes the area near the Vaal and Harts River the perfect location. Some of the popular cultivars are Wichita, Choctaw and Ukulinga. BFN have relationships with a broad spectrum of pecan growers, making it possible to source the best quality nuts for the international market.

Vaalharts Processing Plant

The Vaalharts Processing Plant is situated in the Vaalharts area, where more than half of South African pecan nuts are grown. The main functions of the Vaalharts Processing Plant are sizing, grading and cracking pecan nuts. Nuts acceptable for in-shell exports are cleaned and sized accordingly, whereas pecan nut halves and pieces go through a more rigorous process of cracking and grading. After representative nut samples are drawn, they are analysed according to physical, microbiological and chemical specifications. Each shipment receives a detailed analysis sheet with pecan nut specifications to ensure conformity.

Exporting

BFN manage the whole supply chain to ensure customers across the globe receive their produce in the most effective and timely manner. A foundation of trust is established before transactions are made to bridge any uncertainties and to build a long-term relationship. Successfully executing the export function is top priority to guarantee competitiveness across borders.

Our sourcing, processing and exporting functions strengthen our trade solution. In return, our trade solution enables us to excel in bringing the best South African pecan nuts to the rest of the world.

Product information

At Bester Fruit & Nuts we sell pecan nuts in three forms, 1) nuts in-shell, 2) halves and 3) pieces.

Nuts in-shell are also called farmers stock. The nuts are cleaned, graded and sized according to nut count per kg. Nuts can be mixed across cultivars so that the best count per kg are reached. The grading and sizing of the pecan nuts are based on United States standards for grades.

IN-SHELL SIZE SPECIFICATION
In-shell size Count per kg Meat yield Cultivar in-shell
OS 100-120 55% and higher Choctaw
XL 121-140 55% and higher Wichita
L 141-170 55% and higher Ukulinga
M 171-210 55% and higher Mix
S 211 and more 55% and higher Mix

Pecan halves are mainly used in the snack and baking market. After in-shell nuts are shelled in our processing facility, it is graded, sized and vacuum packed in 15kg bags.

HALF SIZE SPECIFICATION
Shelled Halves Count per kg
Mammoth Halves 550 and less
Jnr Mammoth Halves 551-660
Jumbo Halves 661-770
Extra Large Halves 771-990
Mammoth

Pecan pieces are used in the baking and confectionery market. The pieces are categorised according to size and then vacuum packed. The pecan halves and pieces are packed in carton boxes ready for exports.

PIECES SIZE SPECIFICATION
Shelled Pieces Measures
P1 Thru 14.3mm over 12.7mm
P2 Thru 12.7mm over 9.5mm
P3 Thru 7.9mm over 6.4mm
P4 Thru 6.4mm over 4.8mm
P5 Thru 4.8mm over 3.2mm
P1-P5
Choctaw
Mohawk
Ukulinga
Western
Wichita

For further inquiries, or order placement, please contact Bester Fruit and Nuts on tel: +27 (0)21 809 2500 or email: info@bester.co.za.

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