Is it really almost December? There should be an emoji for aging person with little sleep and drinking coffee while riding airplanes. If there were, I would insert it here.
To me the best cure for exhaustion is adventure and inspiration: “A rolling stone gathers no moss” – quote by someone like me. Therefore, this Thanksgiving, I decided to hit the road towards Chile in order to find some fuel for the tank. Over the last 7 days, I visited Santiago, Los Andes, Zapallar, Viña del Mar, and the Colchagua valley. I have had this trip on my list for a long time and it was better than I ever imagined! Grapes, raisins, avocado, yellow lemon, blueberries, cherries, and much more
We saw it all! Our journey began in Santiago, which is now one of my favorite cities in South America. The city sits at the base of the most beautiful peaks and the weather this time of year is a perfect, between 80-82 degrees. Our meeting schedule included development banks, Invest Chile (Government Development Authority), and international exporters.
In these meetings, we learned that Chile is a very established agriculture economy. They are the number 1 global exporter of fresh grapes, blueberries, plumes, and dehydrated apples. Furthermore, Chile is one of the few countries in the hemisphere that can produce in the off-season of most other developed countries, which gives it a virtual monopoly on several products during certain times of the year. As I have mentioned in the past, fresh fruit is all about window of production.
Our target product during this visit were seedless table grapes, primarily because of the high demand and margin, especially for organic grapes. Local sources are reporting $60,000-$80,000 per hectare, depending on the month of harvest and we confirmed this pricing with our market contacts. The windows of production in Chile are January through April depending on the location of the farm, given that the country is very long and has different harvest schedules depending on the longitude. We met several growers and visited several farms in the north and south. Land prices in Chile are quite a bit higher than prices in Colombia and Peru, so any future project might be done as a combination of land purchase and long-term lease.
Our guide this week, Jose Antonio, is the former president of the Chilean Organic Association. First, we traveled north to see table grapes; then west towards the coast to checkout avocados; then south to see blueberries, raspberries, and lemons; and finally to the interior to see wine grapes and cherries!
Yes, I know what you are thinking… my mother said the same thing when I told her we were studying wine grapes instead of spending Thanksgiving at her dinner table… starts with a B and ends with a T. As I told her, you have to taste the wine to know if it is any good…
In all seriousness, the trip was a success and we have laid the groundwork to begin preparing models and project identifications with local partners. I am very excited to see how the models turn out with the type of market price that we can get in these windows because they should present a very good value for investment. Stay tuned.
Visit to Panama Nov. 15-16
Meanwhile, before Chile, the team hit the road to make the launch of Panama Golden Pineapple LP official! Peter Kern and I celebrated Farmfolio’s third offering with Paul and Edna Vergara at the farm in La Chorrera. So far, the response has been tremendous, as we have received over $1,700,000 in prospective investment. Initially seed funded by Farmfolio, Panama Golden Pineapple is already in the planting phase. The project has approximately 10 hectares seeded and the team is continuing to make progress ahead of schedule. Likewise, the projected dividends in late Q1 of 2019 could even be ahead of schedule as well.
We will be hosting a webinar this week to discuss the implementation schedule as well as having a Q&A session with the farmers Edna and Paul. Click the link below to join in. Similarly, the PPM can be downloaded below. Do not miss the opportunity to get in on this incredible offering, we’re almost fully committed!
“OMG!!!” That was Peter’s reaction to the size of the trees at the farm. We visited the exact tree planted during his visit in April of this year and the growth has been almost 6 feet!
The plantation is progressing nicely and we have now completed all plantings for the year. The new seeds for 2018 will be ordered this month and we expect to begin planting again in early April. This past week marks the second anniversary of our first visit to GP. Therefore, as Peter and I stood up on the hill overlooking the farm, we could not help but reminisce on the first trip and the amount of progress that has been made.
Simultaneously, we are very excited to be announcing the addition of a sawmill into GP AGRO SAS, which will benefit both GP I and II investors. We are hoping to begin the construction on this facility in early 2018 and to be operational by Q4 of 2018. We will be updating the valuation to include this new revenue in the coming months.
The cattle operation is also winding down for the year. We are in the process of liquidating the remaining cattle at the farm to continue with the expected December distributions. At the advice of our cattle expert, Jaime, the farm needs to take 30-45 days of rest during January and early February.
This will also provide us with the opportunity to direct all attention to finishing dry season projects, including irrigation systems, the second reservoir, and the teak inventory system. Next year will be a busy one and we expect to begin cash flowing from the teak operation late 2018 and into 2019.
For those who are still considering investment into GP… Let me leave you with this: This project is already 24 months into development and currently has a yield 8 times higher than any US bank rate with the opportunity for more than 100% appreciation over the next 4 years! Moreover, it includes ownership of over 1270 acres of high quality farmland! If you can find something better, call me, I will invest with you!
There is $1,300,000 left of GPII and there won’t be anymore! If you’re looking at alternative investments, this is an incredible value! Get it while you can!