Kiwifruit and wine are leading New Zealand’s growing horticulture industry, with the country exporting a record NZ$5.1bn in produce in the year to June 2016.
Accounting for around 10 per cent of New Zealand’s merchandise export income, the record value is up 19 per cent on last year, according to the latest issue of Fresh Facts, published by Plant & Food Research.
Total fresh fruit exports increased 35 per cent to NZ$2.6bn, with kiwifruit exports up 42 per cent to NZ$1.7bn, apple exports up 23 per cent to NZ$692m. Blueberries and cherries saw increased of 50 per cent and 30 per cent, respectively, while avocado exports dropped to NZ$82.6m due to a smaller export volume.
Peter Landon-Lane, CEO of Plant & Food Research, said the value of New Zealand’s exports from horticulture has increased 50 per cent since 2010.
“The horticulture industry’s success is based on efficient production and supply systems, cultivars that meet global consumer requirements for novelty and taste, and strong branding of New Zealand products,” Landon-Lane said. “This focus on capturing value across the supply chain means we can continue to produce more and better food for ourselves and consumers around the world.”
New Zealand exported fruit, vegetables and flowers to more than 124 countries in 2016, compared to 117 countries in 2010, with Asia the leading market for New Zealand horticulture exports at NZ$1.9bn – more than twice the value of any other region.
The total horticulture industry is worth NZ$8.7bn, with New Zealanders spending NZ$1bn on fresh and processed fruit, and NZ$1.3bn on vegetables over the year.
“It’s exciting to see the horticulture industry is on track to meet its goal of NZ$10bn by 2020,” said Mike Chapman, CEO of Horticulture New Zealand. “Our keen understanding of the global consumer and the commitment to quality at every stage of the value chain means our produce commands a premium in the marketplace, and this is reflected in the outstanding growth of the industry.”