SHAFFE congress

Ministers from key Southern Hemisphere producing countries are lined up to speak at the Southern Hemisphere Fresh Fruit Trade Congress, which takes place online on 30 March.

The event’s organiser SHAFFE (Southern Hemisphere Association for Fresh Fruit Exporters, said their participation demonstrates that the fresh produce trade has gained significant recognition at government level in a continued period of cost hikes and supply chain disruptions.

Esteban Valenzuela, Agricultural Minister of Chile; Fernando Mattos Costa, Minister of Livestock, Agriculture and Fisheries of Uruguay; David Littleproud, Minister for Agriculture and Northern Australia; former Minister of Agriculture of Peru, Milton von Hesse, and Phil Houlding, Director of International Policy at the Ministry for Primary Industries in New Zealand will give keynote speeches at Wednesday’s conference.

“All five government representatives will honour the fresh produce industry as a key pillar to food security, to a sustainable future and as a strategic element for their future growth strategies,” SHAFFE said.

“With these contributions the Southern Hemisphere fresh produce industries have been proving that their valuable contributions to public health and global nutrition are increasingly moving into the centre of public debate.”

SHAFFE said the interventions come as Southern Hemisphere exporters prepare for a challenging season mired by uncertainty created from Covid in China, cost hikes and continued supply chain disruptions in Northern Hemisphere markets.

SHAFFE president Charif Christian Carvajal said the congress was created “to become our platform to exchange information on the upcoming season with our colleagues in the Southern Hemisphere as well as our trading partners in the Northern Hemisphere markets”.

This year’s congress will analyse current market access developments in China and India together with sector experts Kurt Huang, Deputy Secretary General of the Fruit Section of the China Chamber of Commerce for Food Stuffs and Native Produce and Sumit Saran, Director at SS Associates, a leading expert for the Indian import and retail sector.

Industry perspectives will be shared by exporters of the leading commodities to the Chinese and Indian markets, including Ben McLeod from New Zealand’s Mr Apple, Jeff Scott from the Australian Table Grape Association, Mario Edwards from Chilean cherry supplier Agrofruta, Jason Bosch from South African citrus supplier Origin Direct Asia, and David Bustamante from Peruvian blueberry grower-exporter Grupo Cerro Prieto, Peru.

The CEOs of Brazil’s Agricola Famosa; CAFI (Argentine Chamber of Integrate Fresh Fruit Producers), Peru’s Consorcio Productores de Frutas and Uruguay’s Urud’Or will discuss the impact of the current cost hikes accelerated through the geopolitical situation.

Ron Lemaire, president of the Canadian Produce Marketing Association, Anton Kruger of FPEF, Ronald Bown of Asoex and Terry Meikle, CEO of New Zealand Apple and Pears will also speak at the event.

The congress will be in English with simultaneous translation provided in Spanish and Chinese.

For more information, click here or get in touch with the SHAFFE Secretariat via