BY PATRICK TOM
The inconsistency in the supply of fresh produce remains a major challenge for supermarkets, said Navin Raju, CEO of City Pharmacy Group Limited.
Mr Raju underlined this at the Central Provincial Development Forum held last week in Port Moresby.
He said that currently they import fresh produce in the 80/20 percent range.
“Previously we were importing on a 50/50 percent range, but we changed our approach to an 80/20 percent import range because the founder of CPL, Sir Mahesh, is keen to promote local products at the National level.
“But the problem now lies in the consistency of the supply of fresh produce to our supermarkets or retail outlets.”
He said they had scaled up projects and partnered with provinces and SMEs to deliver fresh produce to city markets.
“The main problem we face is the supply of products to meet the market demand with constant supply,” Mr. Raju said.
“We sell over nine containers per week across the city, so we need our suppliers to be consistent in their supply of fresh produce.”
Mr Raju said that proper advice between businesses, companies or intermediary buyers needs to be put in place.
“We are in the business and so these people acting as intermediary buyers have to ask us for advice to determine the best purchase price, and at the end of the day the farmers get the income they want for their hard work.” , did he declare. .
An earlier report by CPL management consultant Ajay Patel indicated that over K20 million was spent in a year just on importing fresh produce. One of the main challenges is the continuous supply of fresh produce, he said.
“I believe that better infrastructure development will ease these burdens and give farmers the motivation to work hard, produce more and regularly supply markets,” Patel said.