IRVINE, CALIF. (January 19, 2022) – In the most recent episode of Voices of the Valley, the podcast hosted by Dennis Donohue, the Director of Western Growers Center for Innovation & Technology, and Candace Wilson, CEO of GreenVenus, SP Ventures Founding Partner and Managing Director Francisco Jardim discusses the opportunities – and challenges – of investing in agriculture in Brazil.
Brazil’s size and climate range allows for two to three harvests a year, a bounty that allows for tremendous crop production, Jardim says. But that increased output exists alongside increased pressures.
“Growers need more weapons in their arsenal, and this is more true than ever in a tropical agriculture ecosystem,” he says. “It’s Spring Break for pests. There’s more moisture, it’s hotter…there’s no freezing. It just grows, grows, grows.”
But Jardim warns that the lure of this robust production cycle must be tempered by an understanding of the local economy, human capital, infrastructure and supply chain conditions. Outside investors and companies need to do their homework and collaborate with locals, he says.
“I’m going to go out on a limb here and be a little bit controversial,” he says. “We’ve been seeing Israeli and North American companies trying to take a go at the market. These guys come with what we say in Portuguese very ‘high heels’ – very self-confident. And what usually happens after three to four years of several failures…is that these guys clearly were not successful and the local entrepreneurs developing local technology solutions tackling local problems are starting to win out.”
Voices of the Valley is produced by Western Growers and its Center for Innovation & Technology. The embed code for the episode is below:
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About Western Growers:
Founded in 1926, Western Growers represents local and regional family farmers growing fresh produce in California, Arizona, Colorado and New Mexico. Western Growers’ members and their workers provide over half the nation’s fresh fruits, vegetables and tree nuts, including half of America’s fresh organic produce. Connect and learn more about Western Growers on Twitter and Facebook.