8 Jun 2023 15:05

Steppe planning to repeat last year's 40,000 tonne apple harvest in 2023

KRASNODAR. June 8 (Interfax) - The Steppe agricultural holding, part of AFK Sistema , is planning to harvest nearly 40,000 tonnes of apples this year, the same volume as last year, the holding's General Director Andrei Neduzhko told Interfax.

"We are planting new orchards in accordance with the plan for expanding the horticultural division of the agricultural holding. Today, apples and plums are grown mainly on an area of over 750 hectares. The harvest last season was nearly 40,000 tonnes of dessert apples. The conditions for the new season are favorable, flowering and seed set were successful. At the moment, we expect a harvest at the same level as last year," Neduzhko said.

An automatic drip irrigation system contributes to obtaining maximum yields, he said. The holding has a lab for diagnostics and plant nutrition management, while operational processes are automated.

At the same time, the general director noted that there are no plans to expand the range of crops. More than 50 varieties of apples are grown in the holding's orchards.

The vast majority of the harvest is supplied to federal retail chains: X5 , Magnit , Auchan, Lenta and others, while the company is also increasing its presence in e- commerce. The agricultural holding also has its own fruit storage facility with a capacity of 23,000 tonnes, which makes it possible to ensure the freshness of stored fruit for up to one year.

Steppe was established in 2014. The holding is engaged in crop production, dairy farming, trading in agricultural products and sugar and grocery trading. It also produces and distributes cheeses and dairy products. Assets are located in the Krasnodar and Stavropol Territories, as well as in Rostov Region.