Quality fruit and veg at winning prices

The Market Place is a wholesale and retail seller of fruit and vegetables supplying local markets as well as restaurants, coffee shops and hotels with fresh produce daily.
According to Juliana Cornelius, while a lot of the produce on their shelves is readily available locally, some is not, “and then we source it from South Africa or elsewhere. Fresh produce is delivered to us by road twice a week, with most coming from the Johannesburg Fresh Fruit Market.
“However, we are keen to support local producers, so we buy what we can locally and the farmers deliver to us daily,” she says.
The Market Place opened shop in 2010 with 15 staff members and despite challenges, has grown to employ 25 people and “business is going well,” Juliana says.
To keep a company like theirs going, takes a dedicated staff compliment and it comes as no surprise that they are like one big family, she says.
While the past two years were tricky at times, things are looking up. “The lodges were all closed due to Covid, so they didn't order. We opened the shop and stuck to Covid regulations and we dropped our prices a little to encourage buyers. The coffee shops and restaurants only functioned on a takeaway basis. Even if we only had one or two products to deliver, we did it to keep our customers happy. It was a rough time, but luckily things are picking up again,” she says.
What makes The Market Place the place to shop?
“I would say it's our pricing strategy. We are competitively priced, and our products are of great quality. To keep our produce fresh for longer, it goes directly to the coolers the moment it arrives, which is vital to keep fruit and veg fresh. We also have packers in the shop, so if we notice something has gone off, we remove it from the shelves immediately. Our quality control is top notch.”
Besides advertising their products in the printed media, word of mouth goes a long way. “We also have a small shop out front, and I think the word spreads quickly about our quality and prices.”
In future, clients can expect more products on their shelves, including chicken and cheeses, bread and dry products. “We’re also looking into expanding the shop and of course expanding our client base,” she says.
When asked if they have any plans to expand their business elsewhere, Juliana says they are currently only in Windhoek, “but perhaps later on!”