Selecting Perfection - The Whole Process

Kumara are often compared with Potato and although they are sometimes referred to as Sweet Potato, they are actually very different.

Potato production is highly mechanized whereas kumara are completely different and tend to be a very labour intensive crop to grow.

Propagation

During the late winter months is the time to start preparation for the next kumara growing season. Seed Tubers are carefully selected and sorted to maintain a clean and disease free crop. These Tubers are then taken and placed in propagating beds and will grow to healthy plants. Plants are cut above the ground when they are around 30cm high and these cuttings are planted to produce the next year’s harvest.

Planting

Transplanting of these cuttings into the field begins during October and continues through into December. Prior to planting, the soil is tested, fertilized and gently cultivated and moulded into long ridges in the flat alluvial fields. When conditions are right, the cuttings are taken and each plant is individually placed into these ridges by hand. The rows are then watered over the next few days until the plants are established.

Field Gardens

During the growing season, the crop is regularly monitored and regular weeding is undertaken. Kumara love the sunny tropical conditions in the North and plants will spread out until they completely cover the ridges.

Harvesting

When the crop has been in the ground for approximately 120 days, they are reaching maturity and are ready for harvesting. This takes place during the months from February – April and must be completed before the wet winter season starts. Harvesting is done using purpose built machines on which people stand to sort and clean the roots before they are placed in wooden field bins.

Storage

Immediately after harvest, the full bins of kumara are taken to purpose built storage sheds where they are cured to heal any cuts or bruises. This process also encourages a conversion cycle within the kumara tubers where starches are converted to sugars. Once curing is complete, kumara are stored in a temperature and humidity controlled environment for several months enabling a constant supply to the consumer all year round.

Delivery to you

Throughout the year, our kumara is washed, carefully sorted and packed to avoid any damage and then it is shipped to a Supermarket or Fruit and Vege store near you. This enables you to have a constant supply of fresh, quality, nutritious kumara in your kitchen, all year round.




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