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Dried Tree Fruit is as unique to South Africa as biltong and braaivleis. In the seventeenth century, the Dutch planted fruit trees at the southern tip of Africa that were then dried for later use. The long, dry, and hot South African climate is ideal for this process and dried fruits have now become a cultural food enjoyed by many.

As the deciduous fruit industry in South Africa has grown and matured, regulations have been introduced for the dried fruit industry and its exports. In the past, it was overseen by the South African Dried Fruit Council, which, after the deregulation of the agricultural industry, was known as the Dried Fruit Technical Board. In 2019, the dried tree fruit industry underwent a further structural change. This change led to the incorporation of Dried Tree Fruits (peaches, pears, prunes, apricots, apples, and nectarines) into Hortgro’s service structure – based in Paarl.

The Dried Tree Fruit industry forms part of the larger Deciduous Fruit Industry’s structured approach to empowerment. This approach focuses on land reform, training, economic and social development, technical support, and research. A new four-year levy cycle was also approved by the Minister of Agriculture in 2019 and will be overseen and administered by Hortgro. In this way, the Dried Tree Fruit industry will be fully incorporated into Hortgro and funds can be used cost-effectively.

The new levies will also fund a local market development project that will be launched at the beginning of 2020, with an emphasis on the many health benefits of Dried Tree Fruit, which will hopefully create a new generation of consumers.

Dried Fruit SA

Dried Fruit South Africa is an industry alliance formed in 2019 to champion the interests of our sector in South Africa and to promote the benefits of all types of dried fruit. Because we believe our consumers deserve to know about and enjoy dried fruit’s wholesome goodness.


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