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Marap Organic Dried Fruit

Marap Organic Dried FruitEstablished in 1999 in Austria, Marap now provides dried fruits and nuts to customers in 40 countries. Starting in late 2011, Unicorn started stocking a range of organic dried fruits from Marap’s Pearls of Samarkand brand, including: Aronia Berries, Barberries, Wild Blueberries, Sweet, Sour and Mixed Cherries, White, Black and Mixed Mulberries, and Pomegranate Seeds.

Many of these fruits, such as mulberries, cherries, pomegranates and barberries, are from the silk road regions in central Asia. Samarkand has a history stretching back over 3,000 years, as an important crossroads on the Silk Road and a key centre of trade. It was a meeting place of goods and cultures, a place where merchandise from Europe, Persia, India, the Arabian Peninsula, China and Africa were bought and sold.

In July 2011 Marap had its first Fairtrade audit in Uzbekistan, at an operation controlled by the Turkiston Gulba group of 150 small farmers. Organic sour & sweet cherries have started the process of certification, and other Marap Organic Dried Fruit organic products will follow in the near future. Hopefully the process will be completed in 2012, and in the next few years, more farmers will be added so that Marap Fairtrade includes more than 1000 families.

Also in 2011 Marap designed & constructed the world’s largest CO2-neutral Solar and Biomass Dryer system at its facility in Samarkand, Uzbekistan. This system doubled the drying output in Uzbekistan, enabling Marap to sell more goods from it’s own farm, the Turkison Gulba group and the wild collecting areas. After the initial investment, the solar drying system runs basically without operating costs, and without reliance on gas or electricity. In addition, a tunnel dryer (comprised of many individual trolleys), Marap ensures batch-by-batch drying and traceability even for small batches. With the implementation of the second part of the drying system in autumn 2011 (a Biomass recycling burner system), the Samarkand facility will be able to dry organic raw materials even in bad weather – using the waste from the fruit & nut agriculture & processing as fuel!

Marap
 

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