By Angela Norval
The resilience of the macadamia market has helped the Marquis Group through a challenging 2021 season, with the company optimistic about what the following year could bring.
Marquis Group CEO Larry McHugh said this optimism is being felt already because the Bundaberg crop was looking good and would possibly be up on last year.
“We are still assessing the crop in other growing regions in Australia, but at present we expect the Australian crop to be similar to last year,” he said.
“Throughout the Bundaberg region the rainfall at the end of 2021 came at a good time with the 2021 harvest complete and the 2022 crop already set.
“The trees were still recovering from drought in prior years so the rain will help speed up that recovery and importantly there is now enough irrigation water to keep the trees in good health into next year.”
Further heavy rainfall over the previous weekend hasn’t caused any major problems for growers as yet, but it is something that Marquis Macadamias will be keeping an eye on over the coming weeks.
“One thing we are particularly proud of is that approximately 80 growers have become shareholders of Marquis over the last six months and we are continuing to receive enquiries from many other growers.
“We now have approximately 250 shareholder growers out of a total 380 growers who deliver to us and we expect the number of growers delivering to us will continue to increase.”
The increase of growers will prove even more beneficial as Marquis Macadamias three stage multi-million-dollar expansion of its Bundaberg processing facility comes to fruition.
The development application has been approved and detailed plans are currently being worked on with an anticipated construction start of late 2022.
“In the meantime, there are still many people around the world who have not tasted a macadamia nut and even when people have tasted them, they are not always readily available in their country.
“As the Australian and world crop grows, we have enough product to be able to introduce macadamias to more people and countries around the world.
“Once consumers become aware of macadamias, we find that the their unique butteriness and soft crunch speaks for itself and people just keep coming back for more.
“The job for Marquis and the rest of world industry is to keep the supply of good quality macadamias flowing and to ensure more people in more countries get to experience them.”