Consumer research has repeatedly shown that quality is one of the key drivers of mango sales. The two critical factors of quality that affect purchase, and repeat purchase, are appearance and flavour. This season, AMIA is focussed on improving mango quality across the board. Activities we are undertaking include:
Currently there appears to be a broad interpretation of quality specifications with regard to various classes of fruit. This season, we will be reviewing and updating the current quality specifications that are in place. As an industry, we need standardised quality specifications that we can ensure are recognised and understood by all industry participants. Individual retailers and suppliers will still use their own quality specifications to meet their consumer requirements.
Dry Matter testing
‘Dry Matter’ matters, so please ensure you have tested mangoes from each block before you begin harvesting. AMIA will be working with growers in all production regions to conduct dry matter testing, although the scope of what we will be able to undertake will vary within each region due to the resources we have available. We are exploring the availability of NIR technology to assist with this activity. Please contact Boyd Arthur, AMIA Supply Development Manager, for more information (phone: 0458 803 220 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org).
In-market assessment for flavour-—Objective reporting
Growers have been asking AMIA to do more to ensure mangoes that reach our consumers don’t disappoint them. We have listened to their feedback and this season we have established an independent reporting system that will assess fruit and measure brix levels once the fruit has ripened. The results of these assessments, will be made available to industry.
We are confident that mango growers, and industry stakeholders, will be encouraged by AMIA’s positive position on maturity assessments and will support this objective reporting system.
This season we are undertaking consumer research to determine the minimum, and optimum, dry matter and brix levels across several key varieties and, potentially, regions. We will be testing to see whether a minimum dry matter content of 14%, which is currently stated in a number of quality specifications that are available, is in-line with what our consumers want. The results of the consumer research will influence the quality specifications that are being reviewed and updated this season.
Quality issues through the season
Each season, growers, wholesalers and retailers can face a range of quality issues. Some are relatively minor and can be fixed quickly, whereas other issues are harder to manage and need a lot more work. E.g. Resin Canal Discolouration has become a significant issue over the past two seasons and a major research project has been initiated with the aim of determining the cause and solution.
This season we have contracted Terry Campbell, an experienced mango quality specialist from the Queensland Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry. Terry will be available upon request to work with growers, wholesalers and retailers with the aim of addressing quality issues as they arise during the season.
If you have issues during the season that you would like addressed, please contact AMIA.
Best Practice guides
During the season, we will be collating a range of information on mango handling. This information will be developed into easy-to-use guides in a range of formats that all sectors of the supply chain can use to improve mango handling.