For fresh fruit and vegetable marketing and distribution in Asia Staff


Thursday 11th September 2008, 17:40 Hong Kong

Fresh produce trade fair blasts off in HK

The Asiafruit Congress and ASIA FRUIT LOGISTICA got off to a flying start today

Fresh produce trade fair blasts off in HK

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HORDES of fresh produce executives from across the world converged in Hong Kong today for the opening of ASIA FRUIT LOGISTICA and Asiafruit Congress, Asia’s only fresh produce convention event.

Visitors to ASIA FRUIT LOGISTICA poured through the doors to find a trade fair featuring some 215 exhibitors from 33 different countries. The sell-out exhibition, which is taking place on 10-12 September, has grown by 85 per cent since its launch in Bangkok last year.

Several exciting products and services were showcased on the opening day of the trade fair. Malaysian grower-exporter MAFC launched a brand new hybrid variety of yellow-skinned papaya under the ‘Paiola’ brand. Meanwhile, Azerbaijan’s Royal Pom displayed its pre-packed pomegrante arils, which generated great interest from visitors.

Malaysia and Azerbaijan were two of the 12 new countries to exhibit at this year’s ASIA FRUIT LOGISTICA. The other nations exhibiting for the first time included Vietnam, Colombia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Mexico, Pakistan, Tunisia and the United Arab Emirates.

Earlier in the day, delegates to the Asiafruit Congress heard how major changes to the way retailers in Asia source their foods are likely to have a significant impact on fresh produce suppliers during the coming years.

John Glover, food director at Metro Group Buying based in Hong Kong, told the conference that his company and others like it were exploring global procurement strategies as competition for regular, high-quality volumes continues to intensify and as food safety requirements become more exacting.

"Given the billions we’ll be investing in future, we need to look at the way we buy and source our products," he said. "Over the next 10 years, the retail and wholesale sectors are set to double their business, but many countries are already consuming more than can be produced."

Some 600 delegates from 40 different countries have been attracted to Asiafruit Congress, now it its 11th year.

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