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Welcome to Lona, catch up on our latest news below:
  • news1

    IDC Rehabilitates Eastern Cape Citrus Farming

    APPLYING a model that can potentially reconfigure South African rural farming, the Industrial Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) has rehabilitated a historically disadvantaged Eastern Cape citrus farming community and created 362 new jobs in an environment riddled with unemployment.

    [ Read more ]
  • news1

    BEE - Lona Trading and Riverside Enterprises

    Lona Trading and Riverside Enterprises are involved in a joint venture in the Eastern Cape in which twenty emerging citrus farmers in the Kat river region are receiving export support. Two Additional initiatives of this nature are in the pipeline

    [ Read more ]

The History

Back in 1996, preceding the chaotic de-regulation of the South African industry, a fruit company was started in a converted neighbourhood garage in Cape Town. That garage belonged to one Michael Johnson, father of Spencer, who founded the greater Lona group with a loan of R30,000 from a fruit farming uncle.

Over the next 5 years Lona grew quickly, expanding not only in vegetables, citrus, deciduous and exotic fruits, but also into tea, wine and dried fruits.

A turning point in the development of the group came with the decision in 2004 to specialize in citrus, while at the same time divesting from all other fruit types. This critical decision has allowed the management of the group to focus all efforts, and capital, as well as their combined creativity, to form the pre-eminent integrated citrus grower - packer - shipper in Southern Africa.

Successful investments have been made in primary citrus cultivation, packhouse and coldstores, new cultivar development, and most importantly, valuable and long lasting relationships with key stakeholders at both farm and market levels.

Lona sources fruit from farms in the Western and Eatern Cape, Kwazulu Natal, Mpumalanga, Limpopo and Zimbabwe. Owned and managed production is spread over the Kat River and Patensie valleys in the Eastern Cape, encompassing a total of 750 hectares of citrus. Planting programmes to 2011 will take this figure up to 1,300 hectares, of mainly satsumas, clementines, navels, lemons and late mandarins(clemengold, mor, orr and valley gold).The group will pack and sell approximately 4 million cartons of citrus in 2009, into 40 key markets around the world.

Lona is staffed by a passionate and dedicated group of young people, strongly representative of the demographics of the Western Cape, where the company remains based to this day. The 4 directors, Spencer Johnson (Managing), Stefan Lombard (Procurement), Derek Sutton (Marketing) and Lammie van Vreden (Technical), together since 1999, have grown the company into the premier citrus business it is today.

Products



Pack Weeks

Weeks 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42
Satsumas
Clementines
Mandarins
Novas
Lemons
Navels
Cara Cara
Ruby Red
Star Ruby
Marsh
Valencia

PREFACE: The Citrus Growers' Association relies on growers to submit tree census information each year before going to press. Readers should bear in mind that this booklet represents data for the 2009 export season.


DISCLAIMER: This booklet has been compiled with information presently available and in good faith but with the express condition that the Citrus Growers' Association accepts no liability whatsoever for any loss or damage resulting from the use thereof.

Logitsics

At Lona we strive to serve our Producers and Buyers alike, therefore, in this ever demanding supply chain environment it is of utmost importance to align our company with the best 3PL partners in the industry. On a daily basis our Logistics Team will monitor and liaise with Producers, Clients, Cold Stores, Shipping Lines, Airlines, Trucking Companies and authorities locally and across the Globe. Although we outsource many Supply Chain functions, there is one thing that sets us apart from many: “Keeping our finger on the Pulse!”

The typical route for the flow of fruit would be from Orchard to Pack House, once “packaged” the fruit would move to a Port Cold Storage facility by rail or truck, be cooled and transported to the many Fruit Hubs across the Globe. It is of utmost importance to be able to track your fruit in every link of the chain this is why our industry relies heavily on technology in this ever changing environment.


Our 3PL Partners:

Cold Storage & Warehousing:
The main accumulation point for the fruit is in a cold storage facility closest to the Port of Exit. It is in these stores that we cool our fruit as the Cold Chain is the most critical part of the fruit’s shelf life. These stores have very advanced IT systems enabling them to keep stock records track every pallet movement within the store, from the time of intake to the time of dispatch. In order to enable us to make up to the minute decisions, we require accurate information on our fruit. For more information on cold storage facilities that we use please visit the following sites:
www.ecsdurban.co.za
www.fpt.co.za
www.comcold.co.za

Where possible, we also load Reefer Containers at source, in the heart of the production areas, this cuts out additional handling of the fruit and this fruit would bypass the cold storage facilities in our Ports and go directly into the dedicated Reefer Port Terminals, ready to be loaded on vessels waiting alongside or to be berthed in a short space of time. This fruit would either move down by Rail or Road and careful planning and timing is of the essence, thus redefining the J.I.T principle.


News

  • news1

    IDC Rehabilitates Eastern Cape Citrus Farming

    APPLYING a model that can potentially reconfigure South African rural farming, the Industrial Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) has rehabilitated a historically disadvantaged Eastern Cape citrus farming community and created 362 new jobs in an environment riddled with unemployment.

    [ Read more ]
  • news1

    BEE - Lona Trading and Riverside Enterprises

    Lona Trading and Riverside Enterprises are involved in a joint venture in the Eastern Cape in which twenty emerging citrus farmers in the Kat river region are receiving export support. Two Additional initiatives of this nature are in the pipeline

    [ Read more ]

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