Date: 26/01/2024

Thanks to to a game-changing partnership between Agricrafters and DP World, fresh blueberries across the Middle East are no longer a fantasy

Blueberries all the way from Romania are now hitting supermarkets across the Middle East, thanks to an innovative new partnership between DP World and a young game-loving fruit producer, Agricrafters. 

Romanian fruit producers have traditionally been limited to selling domestically and to their neighbours, hampered by the lack of specialised equipment and infrastructure required to ship their delicate goods over long distances. But now, this collaboration has unlocked a trove of new possibilities. 

Founded in 2022, Agricrafters – a company born from a love of agriculture and video games (think Minecraft and StarCraft) – was previously selling its produce to other European countries, reaching as far as the Netherlands, Germany, the UK and Italy. But their ambitions stretched further east, to the sun-drenched markets of the Middle East.

The challenge is to maintain the freshness and nutritional value of the fruit on such a long journey. This is where DP World’s global infrastructure -- with multimodal transport options, smart storage facilities, and cutting-edge terminals in Constanta, Romania, and Jebel Ali, Dubai, comes in.

Through its relationship with CMA CGM, DP World secured next-generation controlled-atmosphere reefer containers, which allow real-time monitoring of CO2, O2, temperature, and humidity levels, with the ability to remotely adjust them if needed, ensuring a smooth, comfortable journey for the berries all the way from Romanian fields to Middle Eastern fridges. Since the July-October harvest season last year, 100 tonnes of fresh blueberries have made the trip across the Black Sea to customers in the Middle East already.

Agricrafters aims to expand its Middle East exports tenfold this year, not just with Romanian blueberries, but also with fruits from other European countries like Portugal and Spain, offering a year-round bounty throughout the region.

George Miclos, CEO, Agricrafters, said: “When we initially partnered with DP World, we didn’t expect to penetrate a new market so quickly but working with them has unlocked vast new potential for us. We know this partnership can help us reach new regions and limits in the years ahead.”

To fuel their ambitious expansion, Agricrafters has established a centre in Romania where local blueberry farmers can sell their produce directly to Middle Eastern markets. They're also renting a 2,000-square-meter warehouse in Jebel Ali to receive, pack and deliver fresh fruit across the region. And to ensure a steady supply of top-quality berries, they've already planted 62 hectares of blueberries in Bihor County, Romania, with plans to add another 160 hectares this year.

DP World is equally enthusiastic about the partnership. 

     Rashid Abdulla, CEO & Managing Director, DP World Europe said,

"One of our fundamental goals at DP Word is to unlock access to markets and consumers all over the world for our customers, which also helps to strengthen regional economies throughout the world. Our work with Agricrafters is yet another tangible example of that work and yet more evidence of the success of our operation in Romania, which is currently undergoing a huge expansion plan to help us deliver even stronger logistics solutions in the future.”

     Cosmin Carstea, CEO, DP World Romania added,

“This is just one of many new success stories from DP World Romania. Since setting up in the country in 2004, DP World has been committed to boosting trade for the national and local economies by helping its customers tap into unexplored markets.”

With recent announcements of a €38 million expansion project at Constanta port and a €20 million logistics hub in Aiud, DP World is paving the way for even greater growth, not just for Romanian companies, but for businesses across Eastern Europe seeking to access previously untapped trade routes.