Schoonbee Landgoed’s oldest citrus orchard dates from 1981, when the founder Mr Gert Schoonbee planted the first valencias. His aim was to transform Schoonbee Landgoed into a reputable citrus producing and exporting farm.
Today the blossoming citrus trees are standing proud on 948 hectares of premium citrus growing land in the Loskop Valley, producing a high yield of novel varieties, carefully selected for their production ability and world class eating experience. The subtropical climate in the Loskop Valley also allows for good colour and brix favoured by buyers worldwide.
Schoonbee Landgoed expands their packing facility on an annual basis, in order to handle the expected growth in citrus production and to strengthen the farm’s position as one of SA’s leading citrus producing farms.
The current 14 300m² packing facility features the following:
- Three Compac packing and sorting machines [Vision 9000 which will be upgraded to the Spectrum version soon], imported from New Zealand.
- A Vizier packing and sorting machine.
- Upgraded infeed lines to Compact sorting machines.
These sorting and packing machines combined can pack up to a maximum of 80 tons per hour.
Currently the farm produces 42 000 tonnes [1.7 million export cartons] of citrus which are enjoyed by our majority international clientele as well as our local markets. This 42 000 tonnes are the yield of the plantings which was done before the year 2017. An additional 95 hectares were planted in 2018.
Production will increase to 4 million export cartons in the next few years, once our newly planted soft citrus, lemon and late navel trees become full bearing.
The farm can service the market continually with a near equal split of selected soft citrus-, navels-, valencias-, and lemon varieties for a 7 month period of the year. Packing starts in March and continues nonstop to August.
The different harvest weeks with the cultivars are indicated in the table below:
We export our citrus with the following companies: