The opening day of this year’s Asia Fruit Logistica saw Malaysian producer-exporter MAFC launch a brand new hybrid variety of yellow-skinned papaya under the Paiola brand.
According to the company’s senior vice-president Dr Chan Ying Kwok, who developed the new variety, Paiola papayas offer improved shelf-life, better texture and potentially higher earnings on a number of major export markets.
Trial sea shipments of the fruit to Europe are scheduled to take place next month, following the successful completion of a test programme via airfreight to the UK earlier this year through leading exotics importer Katopé.
MAFC, which is based in Puchong near Kuala Lumpur, currently has around 30ha of papaya production, but is aiming to extend this to 1,200ha in just three years’ time. “We are aiming to supply around 30 tonnes per day by the middle of next year,” commented the company’s marketing and sales vice-president Aw Joo Leng.
The group expects to target key European markets such as the UK, Germany and the Netherlands, as well as Asian markets closer to home including Hong Kong, China and Singapore.