& Our Story
Friersdale is a town situated along the Orange River in the Northern Cape, 60 km south of Upington. The area along the Orange River is renowned for fertile soils and for the production of high quality raisins. There are harsh climatic conditions in this region, summer rainfall is relatively low (± 250mm/annum). The warm summer days and sufficient cold during winter months favours good quality grape production and hence this region lends itself as one of the best regions for raison production in the world.
In the mid 2000’s a family owned Canadian fresh produce business commissioned and built a raisin processing plant in Friersdale for the sole purpose of supplying raisins into the Canadian market. The production facility was known as Kalahari Raisins (Pty) Ltd. The plant ran successfully for a number of years solely supplying its parent company in Canada called Golden Boy Foods. In 2010 the family sold the business in Canada and hence decided to close the plant. A local raisin facility bought the plant with the idea of continuing the operation. They were unsuccessful in doing so as they had limited capital available and the added responsibility of managing a
second plant and current business.
In 2013 a local farmer re commissioned the plant. The new entity was known as Farmers Pride Raisins. The idea being to offer the local farmers a packing and distribution facility, whereby profits are shared. Farmers Pride Raisins would charge a fee to the farmers for their services. The farmer decided during 2017 to sell the plant to concentrate on farming alone.
Orange River Wine (ORC) cellars bought the Farmers Pride Raisins plant during February of 2018. ORC is the largest Ko-op in the Southern hemisphere producing a wide range of wine product for the local and international markets. The producers of wine and raisins are members of the Ko-op and totals in excess of 700 entities. These members own productive land of +-12 000ha alongside the Orange River spanning from Groblershoop in the East to Onseepkans in the West, a total distance of 350km. The production capacity is 7000ton and 60 workers are employed on a full time basis. Farmers Pride Raisins exports 95% of all product packed and supply the rest to the local market.