South African butternut squash competes with the European-grown product, picked during the Northern autumn, for the first few months of the year. Befresh is a young company exporting butternuts to the United Kingdom, European Union and the Middle East, during the first half of the year.

The company exports butternut squash until June, when the European harvest starts again. The butternut squash is shipped at 11°C, but they are looking at perhaps taking that a bit lower, while still preserving internal quality.

Very few growers specialise in butternut squash but many grow it as a cash crop. This year there are fewer hectares under butternut in the Cape, not only due to the water shortage but also because of concerns over water quality and the build-up of salt levels in irrigation water. – Fresh Plaza

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