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Three leading California stone fruit grower-packers will soon be growing and marketing new plum, peach, nectarine and apricot varieties developed by Sun World International LLC under a licensing agreement with the Bakersfield, CA-based fruit marketer. Sun World has issued stone fruit licenses to California-based Wawona Packing Co. Inc. in Cutler, Enns Packing Co-Wespak Sales in Dinuba and Sunwest Fruit Co. in Parlier.

The licenses, which depart from Sun World's traditional business model of farming, packing and marketing its own proprietary fruit varieties, enable the three companies to produce, pack and distribute designated quantities of stonefruit from the extensive Sun World stone fruit variety line-up. The companies have also been licensed to use Sun World’s private trademarks, including the "Black Diamond" and “Black Giant” plum brands, “Honeycot” apricot brand and “Amber Crest” peach brand. “For three decades, Sun World has invested in the development of several superb lines of stonefruit, David Marguleas, senior vice president and chief marketing officer of Sun World International, said in a Feb. 7 press release. “Our breeding staff has notably developed distinctive red-fleshed plums and vibrant red-blushed apricots, and our farming and marketing staff have aggressively produced and marketed these products. We look forward to maintaining our own stonefruit operations along with these new production- marketing alliances with three of the industry’s most venerated companies located in the heart of California’s stone fruit producing region to ensure greater retail, wholesale and consumer access to our specially-bred plums, apricots and peaches.”

Enns Packing-Wespak, Sunwest and Wawona join licensed stone fruit marketers in Chile (Dole Chile S.A., Tuniche Fruits, and Gesex S.A.), Australia (Freshmax/Holman and Montague Fresh), New Zealand (Fresh NZ 2000 and Yummy Fruit Co.), South Africa (Green Marketing and Capespan) and Italy (Apofruit and Agrointessa). These 14 stone fruit marketers distribute plums, apricots, peaches and nectarines grown by Sun World producers under a global-managed planting system.

Special stone fruit lines include a wide range of red-and yellow-fleshed black plums marketed under the “Black Diamond” and “Black Giant” brands, early- ripening apricots marketed under the “Honeycot” brand, and early-ripening peaches and nectarines sold under the “Amber Crest” and “Super Star” brands.

Sun World’s fruit licensing program includes more than 1,000 growers and 30 leading marketing companies in most of the world’s major fruit-growing regions. In addition to its new stone fruit variety development work, the company manages the industry’s pre-eminent seedless table grape breeding program.