Quicornac has become the leading exporter of the world’s passionfruit, providing a consistent portion of the world’s annual supply of passionfruit concentrates and purees. Quicornac, located in Ecuador, started exporting passionfruit in 1989. Its product is held to the highest quality standards and is sourced from exclusively from Ecuador and Peru.
Since day one, Quicornac has led its business with the values of sustainability and community engagement. Across Ecuador and Peru, the business is 100% reliant on thousands of local farmers, whose farms vary in size from small to large.
Quicornac works closely with the local growers to produce and export the highest quality tropical fruits. In an effort to support sustainability in local businesses, Quicornac employees visit the farms it sources its fruit from, and offer advice, supplies, and more to the farmers.
In addition to agricultural quality support, Quicornac has valued social responsibility since its inception by making donations to local churches, schools, and other community groups. Community engagement and support are values that Quicornac has built into its foundation, and practices daily.
After harvesting passionfruit and collecting it in truckloads, the fruit is then brought to the Quicornac facilities, where it is then processed into purees and concentrates for export. Processing for passionfruit juice and concentrate is designed to retain the fresh, wholesome, and unique qualities of the fruit.
At the plant, fresh passionfruit is screened, inspected, and washed. Once cleaned, the fruit is passed to a final selection table where it is inspected and cleared for the extraction process.
Specially designed extractors break down the fruit to prepare it for processing and concentration. Seed fragments, peel and other solids are separated, leaving only the juice.
The juice is then centrifuged, deaerated and pasteurized in a sterilized circuit. If the resulting product meets all quality standards, it is concentrated to the desired brix level. In the concentration step, water is removed from the juice in a low-temperature process. The aroma is recovered by a state-of the-art system that homogenizes the captured aroma with the concentrated juice and restores the signature passionfruit sensory profile.
Ready for packing, concentrate is piped to the filling room where it is placed into plastic bags and drums, which are sterilized by irradiation with ultraviolet light. The bags and drums are then sealed, labeled and moved to freezers where they are quick-frozen.
The entire process is meticulously surveyed by a quality control team that conducts various tests at different stages of the process. Samples from each batch are procured for bacteriological analysis and stored as control samples.
The yield for processing one metric ton (2204 lbs.) of 50 brix concentrate is 12:1. In other words, it takes 12 kg of fruit to make 1 kg of concentrate. About two thirds of the bulk is refuse of which 90% is rind and 10% is seeds.