Who are we?
ExperiCo is a privately owned company offering independent scientific research, technology development, advisory and commercial services to the agriculture industry and other business entities. It is ISO 9001 certified. Our highly dedicated team of professionals combine more than 300 years of experience in agriculture to satisfy the specific needs of each client. The experience of our scientists includes cultivar evaluation, research and development across a broad spectrum of fruit, vegetables and field crops and services. The business has been in operation for more than 35 years. Areas of commercial research specialisation include pre- and post-harvest technologies for quality maintenance and crop yield.
Our permanent team of 35 members includes 13 graduate scientists. ExperiCo is also lucky to have a highly skilled team of 15 technicians with vast experience in general research, field work and laboratory services. In the deciduous fruit season, approximately 15 additional staff members are appointed on a contract basis to assist with the peak work load! While a matrix system is used to maximize human resources and provide cross skills training, generally the staff focus is grouped under applied research, routine services and laboratory services. The latter is an integral in-house support function and includes management and maintenance of 7 cold rooms, as well as analytical, physiology and pathology laboratories.
Our dedicated team strive to live by our ISO 9001:2015 commitments – consistent quality, on time every time!
Our vision, logo and values
Our vision is to ensure the sustainability of ExperiCo for all stakeholders through innovative agricultural research and commercial service solutions for global clients. The primary message of our logo is to symbolize that we use our expertise to break through the rigid barriers of science with innovative, applied agricultural solutions to benefit all our stakeholders. We have built our company on the core values of integrity, commitment, innovation, service excellence and change agility.
How we unlock value for our clients?
At ExperiCo, we focus on the optimization of plant health, maintenance of product quality and storage life throughout the value chain to provide input that can deliver an optimal agricultural product for consumer acceptance. These processes often include harvesting, handling, packaging, storage and distribution related testing and development for local market and export produce. The comprehensiveness of the research conducted depends on the needs of clients and each trial is tailor made to suite client requirements. Typically, trial comprehensiveness and complexity varies from detailed scientific trials through to basic demonstration trials required to satisfy observational needs. Our laboratory provides routine analysis, fruit evaluation and data management services. Through our commercial services we ensure that the theory of research is successfully applied in practice. We have the ability to combine scientific research and development skills with the realities and complexities of commercial fruit handling as well as field crop and vegetable production.
Our satisfied clients include…
Our satisfied clients include global role players with direct and indirect interests in agriculture. Wholesale and retail chemical companies, agriculture industry bodies and forums, new variety developers, exporters, pack houses, packaging manufacturers, producer trusts, producers, supermarkets, shipping companies and universities typically unlock value for their benefit through a business relationship with ExperiCo. Do you need an expert in product evaluation and scientifically conducted trials of applied value to agriculture? Contact ExperiCo today.
Technology transfer of research conducted for Hortgro
In June, the ExperiCo team worked hard on presentations for the Hortgro Symposium. The 7 post-harvest pome and stone fruit presentations are sure to benefit the fruit growers in South Africa!
Leading into the future
Dr Johan Fourie handed over the reins as MD of ExperiCo to Dr Ian Crouch in May 2019. Johan will assist Ian with the transition to MD until October 2019. Thereafter, he will remain on contract to ExperiCo as Research Fellow, so that his 40 years scarce skills expertise will be retained!
Strengthening the team
Pieter Louw who was appointed as a fruit pathologist in January was awarded his Ph.D. degree from the University of Pretoria in April this year! Well done Pieter!
Controlled atmosphere to expand services
A highly specialized Van Amerongen CA system recently purchased by ExperiCo has been fully commissioned and is running smoothly. This valuable asset enables ExperiCo provide an even more comprehensive range of post-harvest research services. The system is already running at 80% capacity, so please book your slot of you require any post-harvest fruit or berry CA research!
Mentoring to share expertise with the next generation
To facilitate in-house mentorship, three ExperiCo Directors, who are also registered as SACNASP Professional Natural Scientists, namely Ian, Johan and Dr Martin Taylor, the latter who is contracted as a Research Fellow, have been allocated various research portfolios to assist training of young scientists. This is an exciting commitment to further developing an already dedicated and capable ExperiCo team!
This year, ExperiCo is conducting in excess of 150 research trials on behalf of multiple local and overseas clients. Some key words to describe the work involved are: chemical alternatives, sanitizers, fungicides, insecticides, bud break, dormancy, decay control, fruit coatings, harvest management, ripening manipulation, packaging, cooling, forced-air cooling, external disorders, internal disorders, fertilizers, stimulants, mites, boll worm, fruit fly, false codling moth, irradiation, storage protocols, CA storage, RA storage, physiological profiling. This research is conducted over a wide range of fruit and field crops. In addition to research, a number of product validation trials are being conducted to test efficacy for purposes of registration compliance.
Fruit pathology is a key focus!