Our field team has the huge responsibility of planting, caretaking and picking over 50 varieties of fruit across 7 hectares of land. It's a task that requires many hands and a lot of experience and knowledge. The field team consists of anywhere from 8 to 15 members, depending on the time of year.
To make sure the everything is in order, the field team spend a lot of time maintaining the fruit orchards. This involves a variety of tasks including: pruning; fruit thinning; mowing; fertilizing; pest control; building supports for heavy limbs; putting sun covers on individual fruit; repairs and maintenance to farm infrastructure; and fruit taste-testing for grade assignment.
Then there is of course the fruit picking. No picking-machines are used at Kannonyama and all fruit is picked by hand. We take special care so as not to cause piercing or bruising to the fruit and any pieces that are accidentally damaged are discarded. This is because damage caused by rough-handling of fruit can detrimentally affect the taste and we want to ensure our fruit is delivered in top condition to our customers. Once harvested, the fruit is placed into containers and then delivered to the either the sorting and packaging division to be sold as whole fruit, or sent to the factory to be processed into one of our fruit products.
Imagine towers of stacked fruit containers and boxes in a big shed and you've got our ever-busy sorting and packaging division. As the name suggests, the team's job here is to sort the fruit and package it up nicely. Depending on how busy it is, the number of staff working here ranges anywhere from 5 to 9 members.
Once delivered here by our field team, samples of fruit are again taste-tested to ensure the batch is suitable for sale. If it passes this test, the fruit is then sorted into various grades (A, B, C, etc.) and sizes (S, M, L, etc.), depending on the particular variety of fruit. This is also where any damaged or visually below-standard fruit is identified and discarded.
Then it's time to ready the fruit for its journey to its new home. Each day, the team in sorting and packaging receive a pile of new customer orders from the office which can be as many as 200 per day in the busy season. The requested fruit and fruit products are carefully weighed and packaged into boxes according to the order and then sent via courier to the customers' doorstep. Our customers range from restaurants to individual households.
Opened in April 2018, our Parlour has been bringing happiness to fruit enthusiasts. From colourful fruit sandwiches to tall parfaits, everything fruity and sweet is on the list. Our pâtissière from Kyoto crafts each one of the menu items and she is currently working on lunch dishes! The work here are divided into the kitchen (food prep), drink section (with dish-washing) and waitressing. Our staff at the Parlour also assist guests in choosing from our wide selection of fruit products. Interns are also welcome to work here, especially those who are majoring in hospitality and have great interest in food and beverage industry.
The opening hours are Wednesday - Monday 10:00 - 17:00 (closed every Tuesday). Weekends are the busiest days, yet we make sure every plate is served to perfection. Here, we try our best every day to locally source the fruits from our own garden and farmers of Kinokawa. We mostly use Japanese products in order to support the local communities. We are very proud to serve our customers only the finest from Japan's Fruit Kingdom, Wakayama.
Just under the Parlour, is the packing area, where customers could walk in to buy some fresh fruits.
The factory team are the magicians who turn our whole fruit into our delicious fruit products, including dried fruit, jam, curd and syrup. Donning white coats, masks and hair nets, the factory group are usually around 5 to 10 members strong.
Each product has its own process and set of ingredients so each day is slightly different in the factory. However, to give an overview, there's a lot of cleaning, cutting, mixing, measuring, dehydrating, boiling and reducing involved. When it's all done and ready to be eaten, the factory team bottle-up the various products and attach our Kannonyama label.
Now completely finished, the products are sent to the sorting and packaging division to be put in boxes and dispatched to our customers.
The office is probably the most important division at Kannonyama because it's the one that communicates with all the other divisions to make sure everything is running smoothly and on track. On top of that, this is where the customer orders are received and without those there would be no company at all! The office clan generally consists of 3 to 5 employees and, of course, the company owners, Shachou and Kaichou.
Kannonyama receives customer orders either via our website, email, fax or over the phone. The office team are responsible for taking and organizing these orders, ensuring we have adequate supply and then delivering the daily order requests to the sorting and packaging division.
Outside of this, they also do a variety of other tasks such as financial record-keeping, website and social media management, product design and event planning.