About Zespri

Zespri International Limited

Zespri is organised in a rather distinctive way. The Zespri group (Zespri Group Limited) is owned by some 2,500 New Zealand kiwifruit farmers who take care of the cultivation of Zespri Kiwifruit wholly in line with our quality system. The sale and distribution of their fruit, including the marketing, is coordinated by Zespri International Limited from the head office in Mount Maunganui (New Zealand).

To handle the sales and marketing within the MEIOA region (Middle East, India & Africa), offices have been set up within all of our major cities. These include Dubai, Mumbai, Delhi and Johannesburg. Within MEIOA, Zespri has an extensive network of local sales and marketing specialists. They are responsible for the regional approach in which close contacts with trading partners and consumers enable them to anticipate what people want and need at a local level. In this way, Zespri’s operations could be described as being simultaneously global and local.

Discover the world of Zespri:

Zespri has offices all over the world from New Zealand, Europe and North America to Asia.

New Zealand (International)    Japan    Korea    Taiwan     USA + Canada     Europe     India     Middle East

the history of kiwifruit


1904 is the year in which it all began. Isabel Fraser, a teacher from Wanganui in New-Zealand, returned from a trip to China with the black seeds of the Actinidia deliciosa. Market gardener Alexander Allison planted these. In 1905 the first kiwifruit grew in New Zealand soil, still called Chinese gooseberries at the time.


1928 meant a break-through in kiwifruit growing. Horticulturalist Hayward Wright succeeded in developing an exceptional variety of the Chinese gooseberry. His variety is characterised by its oval shape, wonderful taste and its strong resistance to perishability. Up to the present time the Hayward variety is quasi synonymous for the popular green kiwifruit.


In 1934 Jim MacLouglin planted Chinese gooseberries on his land in Te Puke, in the Bay of Plenty. The volcanic soil and the mild climate on the north coast turned out to provide excellent growing conditions for the fruit. The first harvest turned up a bumper crop and was sold in the local market. Very soon all the land of MacLouglin (3 hectares) was filled with Chinese gooseberries.


18 years later, in 1952, MacLouglin gave the kiwifruit business a new boost. 20 crates of his fruit were shipped to England together with a load of lemons. They were marketed in Covent Garden, London. The new fruit was so well received that the buyer immediately ordered 1500 crates for the following season.


In 1959 the kiwifruit got its present name, named after the small New Zealand land bird and the nickname for the New Zealanders.

Zespri Green Kiwifruits are high in fibre which helps to improve digestion in a natural way.



Kiwifruit launches in the Middle East starting with Kuwait. First dedicated Zespri employees hired in March 2012.



First Indian employee starts in 2011 with our first dedicated office opening in Mumbai and Delhi in 2015


Launch of SunGold to the MEIOA region in 2012



Open our first office in Cape Town, South Africa in early 2015. Office re-located to Johannesburg at the end of 2015.