Netherlands-based Fruitful-Berries and Belgian group Terra Verde have struck a deal to merge into a new entity, Frescura.

The two groups “will join forces and combine their strengths” in a new, Belgium-headquartered business.

In a joint statement, the companies said both businesses will “continue to function as before, with the same contact persons and details”.

Xavier Verhoestraete, the former managing director of Terra Verde and now a member of the board at Frescura said, the new company aims to gain “more global visibility”.

The statement said Terra Verde has “grown into a strong bundle of sector-related” subsidiaries “over the past few years”, with six units including Emiel De Roeck, Fruitpackers and Verdura Verde.

With the move, the Belgian group’s rationale is to strengthen in the “increasingly important soft fruit category”, the statement read. It added: “With Fruitful-Berries, [it has] added a specialist in the field with its own cultivation, affiliated growers and a global clientele.”

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Maxim De Roeck, founder and co-owner of Fruitful Berries, has also joined the Frescura board. He said: “Terra Verde has expanded in recent years with some nice family businesses with a distinct speciality, forming a real total supplier in our sector with detailed focus on citrus, kiwi, hard fruit, grapes, soft fruit and vegetables (greenhouse and outdoor cultivation) this both conventionally and organically.”

De Roeck added: “The opportunity to build a future together with such a high-quality group does not come along every day so we did not hesitate for a moment.”