Australian grape growers and exporters are eagerly waiting for China's General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine (AQSIQ) to finalise administration protocols allowing them to exporter fresh grapes for the 2018 season.
This is an annual protocol requirement and doesn’t typically cause any fuss. However, an early start to the season, combined with the late fall of Chinese New Year, has created a unique window of opportunity to get product into China just in time for the busy fruit buying period.
Jeff Scott, CEO of the Australian Table Grapes Association, told Asiafruit that growers were eager to take advantage of the opportunity.
The timing has meant that growers and exporters are more impatient than usual to have the list of authorised importers of grapes (the outcome of administration protocols) approved as soon as possible.
An industry stakeholder told Asiafruit that in previous years the list had been approved within a few days.
A separate stakeholder also mentioned that the process is likely holding up plenty of exporters who are keen to get their product over in time.
Currently, no loading of fresh grapes to China is being undertaken until the approved list has been published and the hold has been lifted.