Speakers include Rijk Zwaan's manager of chain & retail, Jan Doldersum (left), and Winstone Chee, director of Altitude Fresh

Expert speakers across multiple categories and markets will shine a spotlight on the diverse and dynamic opportunities for the global fresh produce business in Asia at this year’s Asiafruit Congress.

Asiafruit Congress is going online on 28-29 September 2021 to showcase the huge market opportunity of Asia to the whole world, and to start the countdown for Asia Fruit Logistica’s return to Hong Kong on 7-9 September 2022.

Hosted live from Fruitnet’s offices in Melbourne and London over 48 hours, Asiafruit Congress features both live and on-demand content to enable every fresh produce business to take part easily and in their own time zone.

Leading industry figures from across the world of fresh produce are lined up to speak at the event.

Market shifts with Covid

In the opening session, ‘The challenge to change: Covid-19 and the future of Asia’s fresh produce business’, Jan Doldersum, manager of chain & retail at Rijk Zwaan, and Frutacloud founder George Liu spearhead an expert panel to discuss the impact of the pandemic and the trends that look set to last.

Asia’s shifting food retail landscape is also the focus of a headline session. Winstone Chee, director of Altitude Fresh, shares his first-hand insight on the key changes in China post-Covid. Chee’s wide-ranging talk covers digital improvements, growth in lower tier cities, the reinvention of traditional formats and increasing channel diversity. Crucially, he explains what this all means for fresh produce suppliers and how they can cater to the ever-changing channels.

Stonefruit, bananas, and much more

After two global headline sessions each day, Asiafruit Congress delivers more region-specific content for its audiences in Asia-Pacific/Americas and EMEA/Americas respectively.

An Asia-Pacific broadcast from Melbourne features a session on varietal innovation in the stonefruit category. Sun World International’s VP of licensing Garth Swinburn looks at the latest trends in breeding. Asoex marketing director Charif Christian Carvajal then outlines what’s next for Chilean cherries in Asia, plus he explains the exciting growth the Latin American export powerhouse is seeing for other stonefruit categories such as sugar plums. Francisco Herrera, export commercial manager of MSC Chile, also discusses the logistics of shipping Chilean stonefruit to Asia and the impact of the global pandemic for the upcoming cherry season.

Bananas are big business in Asia, and a session broadcast from London hears from industry heavyweights on the latest shifts in sourcing and consumption. Mohammed Abbas, Del Monte Fresh Produce’s senior VP of Asia-Pacific, the Middle East, and North Africa, outlines the broad trends across the region. Goodfarmer’s Owen Zhang and INI Farms’ managing director Pankaj Khandelwal then analyse the dynamics of the banana markets in China and India respectively.

Other headline sessions at Asiafruit Congress focus on ‘putting sustainability first’ and ‘the big consumption opportunity’. Regional sessions spotlight Vietnam’s emergence as a premium market, digital marketing, market access solutions and Asia’s tropical fruit trade among other topics.

Asiafruit Business Forum offers a second track at Asiafruit Congress, with a range of expert presentations providing practical takeaways on the latest advances in technology, retail and marketing.

In addition to live broadcasts from Melbourne and London, Asiafruit Congress content is available to view on-demand following the event on the easy-to-use online platform.

Register free for Asiafruit Congress at the website and visit the website for more speaker updates and programme information.