The Australian summerfruit industry and growers celebrated access to China for nectarines at Hong Kong’s Asia Fruit Logistica on 7 September.
On hand at the official launch was Horticulture Innovation Australia CEO John Lloyd, Summerfruit Australia CEO John Moore and the summerfruit industry’s Michael Trautwein.
Australia gained access for fresh nectarines to China in May, with the first shipments to go ahead during 2016/17 season which should kick off in late-October.
“Australian nectarine growers are keen to access China this year for the first time through Shanghai, the northern port of Dalian, and they’ve working hard to have their orchards ready to meet that market,” Trautwein told Fruitnet.
“Our ambition is to export 10,000 tonnes of nectarines, which is about 15-20 per cent of Australia’s production.”
Moore added that it was exciting to have such great protocol negotiated for access. The Chinese government has declared South Australia a pest free area for nectarines, meaning fruit can be picked, packed and on China’s supermarket shelves within three days. Fruit grown in other regions will need to undergo either 18 days of cold treatment or eight hours of fumigation.
Summerfruit Australia will be coordinating marketing alongside Austrade, working with wholesalers and retailers in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Chongqing and Chengdu.
“We’ll have programmes for co-funding of advertising and consumer sampling, as well as consumer education about how to use and store nectarines,” Moore said. “It’s key that consumers [in China] get consistent quality fruit. We’re making sure growers in Australia keep a high standard so high quality fruit arrives in China."
The next steps are negotiating access for plums and peaches with Moore hopeful reciprocal trade protocols will be negotiated ahead of the 2017/18 season.