Seeka has agreed to sell five Northland kiwifruit orchards for $15.9 million.

The orchard manager and marketer said the buyers will become long-term suppliers to Seeka, which will manage the properties. Four of the orchards were acquired as part of Seeka’s $40 million purchase of Turners & Growers’ Northland horticulture business in April.

Te Puke-based Seeka said the sale price exceeds the firm’s purchase price and holding costs. Negotiations are continuing for the remainder of the portfolio.

The firm’s shares fell 5 cents to $5.95 and are down almost 9 percent this year.

Seeka, the biggest kiwifruit producer in New Zealand and Australia, said in July it planned to sell nine orchards in Northland covering 288 hectares. They included six orchards acquired from Turners and Growers.

Selling the orchards would allow the firm to focus on refurbishing a Kerikeri packhouse and cool store acquired as part of that transaction.

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