Honey Gold mangoes go for gold in record Australian season

Posted by Jack Cain on 28th May 2018

Leading Australian fruit producer Piñata Farms sent a record volume of specialty Honey Gold mangoes to market during the 2017-2018 season, in line with an Australian mango industry record of 10.7 million trays.

Piñata Farms supplied 30 per cent more fruit for national consumption than the previous year, nine years after sending its first commercial crop to market.

Key account manager of Piñata Farms Rebecca Scurr said;

“We experienced near-perfect conditions in all five states where Honey Gold mangoes are produced. A cool winter to induce flowering, followed by a temperate spring so that flowers’ hold, is conducive to producing fruit in abundance. When fruit is abundant naturally, it also tastes great.”

The key customer account includes the Australian supermarket sector.

The mid-season, Honey Gold variety is a natural hybrid cross between a Kensington Pride and an unknown variety. Honey Golds are larger than most mangoes, have a small seed, high-flesh ratio and a distinctive, sweet honey-like flavour. Piñata Farms holds the exclusive Australian breeding rights to produce the variety.

Piñata Farms and some 30 contracted growers produce Honey Gold mangoes in the Northern Territory, Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria and Western Australia between November and March annually. Honey Gold mangoes are available at more than 2,000 leading supermarkets nationally during that period. About one per cent is exported to the Middle East, the United States and Asia.

Branding strategies  

“Consumers were spoilt for choice over summer with a plentiful supply of all Australian mango varieties. Prices were also keen, and quality was consistent, yet consumers were still willing to pay more for premium Honey Golds. As an exclusive producer, the biggest test is when you’re competing against other varieties in a record year and consumers consistently choose Honey Gold,” Scurr added.

Brand recognition and promoting the Honey Gold’s specific attributes such as flavour and size were vital to the variety’s success, she said.

“Retailers across Australia have worked hard to define mangoes by variety, rather than by category. We’d like to see even more definition of varieties in-store, to help consumers recognise the differences and seek out their favourites, as they do with apples for instance,” Scurr concluded.