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Sharp uptick for table grape exports to Japan

Australian table grape exports to Japan rose by 30% year-on-year in the past season, making the Asian country its third-largest market, according to Weekly Times Now.

The sharp increase compares to a 3% rise in total exports during the 2018 season that ran from January through June. Returns to exports rose by the same level to AUD$384.7 million (US$272 million).

Australian Table Grape ­Association chief executive Jeff Scott said 10,882 metric tons (MT) were shipped to Japan this year, accounting for almost 10 percent of all offshore sales.

The increasing demand in Japan follows investments in promotional events in Japan and Korea before the season kicked off in early January.

“We’ve been doing a lot of work in Japan in terms of gaining market share,” Scott was quoted as saying.

“It’s a very mature market that recognises good quality and is prepared to pay for it. Korea is another market we’ve been working on and where exports have increased quite significantly.”

China remains Australia’s strongest export market for table grapes, taking 41,668MT, or 38 percent, while Indonesia is the second biggest market, ­accounting for almost 15 percent of market share with 16,149MT.

Scott said there was an annual trend of 8 per cent growth across all export markets over the past five years.

Source: https://www.freshfruitportal.com

China: Direct sourcing app for vegetables could be worth US$7B

A Chinese startup called Meicai that helps farmers sell vegetables to restaurants has reportedly raised at least US$600 million in a recent funding round led by Hillhouse Capital and Tiger Global Management, according to Bloomberg.

People familiar with the matter said the money will be used to expand as the startup competes for a bigger share of China’s fragmented food sourcing market.

According to one person familiar, the company raised about US$800 million at a valuation of about US$7 billion. Meicai was said to be valued at about $2.8 billion pre-investment in its previous funding round in January.

Meicai, which means “beautiful vegetable,” was founded in 2014 by Liu Chuanjun, a rocket scientist who set a goal of sourcing produce for about 10 million small- and medium-sized restaurants in China.

Using a smartphone app, customers can order specialties such as bok choy and Sichuan peppercorns directly from farms, disrupting traditional wholesaling by cutting out middlemen.

The funding round is among the largest for a Chinese startup this year, Bloomberg reported.

 

Source: https://www.freshfruitportal.com 

Ecommerce boosts Pacific exports

Digital adoption is fuelling Pacific export growth, and while access to finance remains a barrier to business growth, new data from Pacific Trade Invest Australia’s (PTI Australia) third export survey shows export confidence is high.


The research surveyed more than 200 businesses across agriculture (including forestry, farming and fisheries), tourism, manufacturing, services and resources (including fuel and energy, minerals, gems and pearls) across 16 Pacific Islands.


The report, developed by PTI Australia with the support of ACA Research and the Australian Government, fills the lack of private sector data from the region, providing a snapshot of export dynamics in the Pacific and insight into changes and trends in Pacific exports.


Data shows the proportion of new exporters – enterprises who started exporting in the past three years – has grown 10 per cent in four years to reach 41 per cent, and while the number of businesses reporting an increase in export orders over the past year has slightly declined (49 percent down from 56 percent in 2016), export confidence remains high, with more than two out of three businesses expecting growth over the next year. In line with confidence, most exporters expect to increase employee numbers during the next 12 months.


Fuelling this growth are online channels, which are used by 79 percent of exporters – including social media (67 per cent) and their own or third-party websites or apps (52 and 20 per cent respectively) – to generate revenue.
Tim Harcourt, former chief economist of the Australian Trade Commission (Austrade) and JW Nevile Fellow in Economics at the University of New South Wales, prefaced the report noting that with small populations but vast distances and complicated logistics, the Pacific had a lot to gain from online commerce.


“PTI Australia’s research shows exporters are innovative and proactive in finding new ways to boost sales and there is no doubt the rise of ecommerce, supported by easier access to digital devices, increased usage among customers and better ICT infrastructure, is key to growth,” Mr Harcourt said.


“Government assistance makes a difference too in the Pacific with nearly a third of businesses surveyed contacting PTI Australia for assistance in increasing export orders.”


Australia and New Zealand are the key export markets for Pacific Island exporters with 92 per cent of exporters regarding them as main destinations but intra-regional trade is growing too with more than two in three businesses trading within the region.
“Just as the Pacific continues to play its key role as a ‘nursery’ for Australian and New Zealand exporters, Pacific exporters are also finding the Trans-Tasman economies as their happy hunting ground. Pacific-based exporters in general use intra-regional trade to get their sea legs as an international exporter before expanding to Australasia, Asia and beyond,” Mr Harcourt said.
Access to finance remains one of the biggest challenges faced by the majority of exporters in the region – with the majority of exporters (59 per cent) finding it difficult to obtain finance for their exporting activities – along with high energy prices and transport costs, and the impact of natural disasters.


PTI Australia trade and investment commissioner, Caleb Jarvis, said it was interesting to see most exporters indicate they would consider some level of foreign investment to grow and overcome financing barriers.


“This indicates the market is primed for impact investment, which can drive sustainable economic growth in sectors such as agriculture, aquaculture, forestry, manufacturing, renewable energy, eco-tourism and microfinance,” Mr Jarvis said.
“PTI Australia will continue to support Pacific businesses to facilitate trade, attract investment and create jobs to make long-term, sustainable improvements to Pacific economies.”

 

Access full report 

For more information, images and interview requests, please contact:

Miette Stevens-Lelievre | 03 8537 2790 | miette.stevens-lelievre@fenton.com.au

Trump's trade tariffs push Egyptian oranges to Shanghai fruit shops

The trade war between the United States and China is presenting opportunities for fruit distributor Sunmoon Food Co., as the company is now shipping navel oranges from Egypt, kiwis from Italy and apples from Poland into China for the first time ever. The produce is to fill the gap created when the Asian nation retaliated by slapping tariffs on U.S. fruit.

Sunmoon is not by any means a big company if one compares them to Fresh Del Monte Produce, for instance. Where the latter had a revenue of $4.1 billion last year, Sunmoon only had a turnover of $45 million. But the new business it’s doing in China underscores how the tariff tit-for-tat between the world’s two biggest economies is reshaping global trade flows. China imported $6.2 billion worth of fresh and dried fruit and nuts last year, up nearly ten-fold from 2015, according to customs data.

“As with any trade war or political upheaval, there will always be a certain re-balancing along the markets,” Gary Loh, Sunmoon’s chief executive officer, said in an interview. “Companies like ours can take advantage of this and introduce new products into new markets.”

Sunmoon counts China as its largest sales market, where it can reach 900 million mouths through its partnership with Shanghai Yiguo E-commerce Co., an Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. affiliate that owns more than half of the company.

When China raised tariffs on U.S. goods, Sunmoon responded by shipping navel oranges from a packaging house in the suburbs of Cairo to its warehouses in Shanghai. Other countries' oranges are being tested, like the ones from Israel, Morocco and Spain. These oranges are put out in the Chinese market with the chance of increasing shipments next year if the tariffs have not been removed.

Source: Bloomberg via: www.freshplaza.com


Publication date : 9/17/2018

 

Kiwi fruit claim costs New Zealand taxpayers $6 million plus in Biosecurity case

Taxpayers have so far spent $6 million to defend the kiwifruit claim case, and the Appeal Court hearing has yet to start. This will make it the most expensive primary sector court case on record.

In June, the 212 growers who joined a class action won a High Court case which found the Ministry for Primary Industries was negligent in allowing the disease Psa into the country in 2010. They are claiming $450m compensation.

MPI said it was taking the case to appeal because it sought to "clarify the scope for government regulators to be sued in negligence". It added the High Court finding had the potential to "significantly impact on the Ministry's biosecurity operations".

The claimants have filed a cross-appeal on the grounds that packer Seeka was owed a duty of care, contrary to the High Court finding, and that MPI was negligent in failing to inspect a shipment of banned kiwifruit plant material, infected with Psa, when it arrived from China.

The 12-week High Court case was funded by litigation funder the LPF Group, chaired by former Supreme Court judge Bill Wilson. As a funder of the class action, LPF Group is to receive a percentage of the compensation granted.

In response to an Official Information request, the Ministry for Primary Industries said the $6m figure did not include internal staffing costs, and it would not be possible to provide an exact figure for the total time spent by staff. The costs for consultants and experts paid directly by MPI was $400,000.

Source: stuff.co.nz via www.freshplaza.com 


Publication date : 9/17/2018

Bumper California navel deal predicted

Fruit set is up 22 per cent on the five-year average meaning high volumes expected despite no increase in total hectares planted
Starting from a lower plantation base this season the California navel deal is looking to be the most fruitful in volume since the 2005-2006 season. The news comes with significance as total land volume this season is down 8,700 planted hectares from ten years prior.

Survey data from the California navel Orange Objective Measurement Report indicated a fruit set per tree of 426, above the five-year average of 333 (up 22 per cent).

The survey predicts the initial 2018-2019 navel orange forecast is 80m cartons, up 11 percent from the previous year. Of the total navel orange forecast, 77m cartons are estimated to be in the Central Valley.

Bearing orchards are at the same number of hectares as the year prior, but with the higher fruit set (up 426 per tree from 273 last season) the hope is that forecast volumes will be bumper.

However, total tonnage might not be as high due to fruit diameter at a lower September 1 average. The five-year average as of September 1 was at 6.8cm, now down to 5.3cm.

 

Source: http://www.fruitnet.com Author: Camellia Aebischer

Taste Australia delivers in first year

Hort Innovation initiative celebrates successful 12 months with strong showing at Asia Fruit Logistica
A year after launching its “boldest foreign trade initiative to date,” Horticulture Innovation Australia (Hort Innovation) has toasted the success of the country’s largest collective representation at Asia Fruit Logistica.

A delegation of more than 220 stakeholders representing 80 Australian businesses showcased their wares under the 528m2 Taste Australia pavilion last week.

Launched at Asia Fruit Logistica 2017, the Taste Australia programme promotes the country’s horticulture industry at both trade and consumer level.

Underpinned by more than A$40m in research and development projects, the initiative was developed in response to industry calls for a cohesive, national export project to drive foreign interest and demand for Australian horticultural products.

“We have been exhibiting at Asia Fruit Logistica for more than 10 years,” explained Hort Innovation general manager for trade, Michael Rogers. “When Taste Australia launched last year, we found it increased our engagement with key stakeholders across Asia.

“Through the Taste Australia brand, we are strengthening our homegrown produce on a global stage, bringing high quality, high-end premium goods to international markets.”

The Taste Australia programme has proven so successful that it is now being rolled out in 10 countries across Asia and the Middle East.

The extensive trade effort over the last 12 months has helped propel fresh horticultural exports to a record A$2.18bn for the year ending June 2018, with over 40 per cent of this value being driven by the export of citrus fruits, table grapes and cherries.

“Australia has a solid reputation for delivering high-end produce that has undergone the most rigorous inspections along all stages of the supply chain, and the Taste Australia brand builds on this,” Rogers added.

 

Source: http://www.fruitnet.com Author: Matthew Jones

Australia and Thailand finalise irradiation deal

Persimmon and mango suppliers the first to benefit from new agreement signed last week
Australia and Thailand have announced a new irradiation pathway for horticultural exports.

Finalised last week, the agreement will provide Australian and Thai suppliers with a more direct avenue to exporting their products, along with a safe and chemical-free way to manage biosecurity.

The irradiation process sees fruit enter a large chamber via a conveyer belt, where it is sterilised, killing bacteria and pests.

In most cases, the process alleviates the need for cold treatment, which is commonly conducted in transit via seafreight. Therefore, irradiation will provide a viable option to exporters from both countries hoping to send their fruit via airfreight.

Australian persimmon growers and Thai mango exporters will immediately benefit from the new agreement, with these products the first to be ticked off for approval under the irradiation plan.

Produced primarily in south-east Queensland, Australian persimmons have previously been exported to Thailand under cold treatment.

“This agreement will help open doors for the Queensland persimmon farmers and deliver speed to market,” said Australian minister for agriculture David Littleproud.

“With this deal done and dusted we can get on to tackling other commodities and get them on this same pathway. This will help get our quality produce onto Thailand supermarket shelves faster.” 

 

Source: http://www.fruitnet.com Author: Matthew Jones

Taste Australia yields big results in foreign trade

In the 12 months since Hort Innovation launched its boldest foreign trade initiative to date, the industry has reported record export sales and greater demand for Australian grown produce.

Underpinned by more than $40 million in research and development projects, and backed by world-class science and technology, the Taste Australia initiative was developed in response to industry calls for a cohesive, national export project to drive foreign interest and demand for Australian horticultural products.

The initiative was launched at Asia Fruit Logistica (AFL) last year, which is the largest specialised fruit and vegetable trade event in Asia. The project proved so successful, it is now being rolled out in 10 countries across Asia and the Middle East.

Australian growers will once again showcase their premium products under the Taste Australia banner at AFL next week with a Hort Innovation delegation of more than 220 stakeholders, representing 80 Australian businesses across 528 square metres.

The extensive trade effort over the last 12 months saw the value of fresh horticultural exports reach a record $2.18 billion for the year ending June 2018, with over 40 per cent of this value being driven by the export of citrus fruits, table grapes and cherries.

Hort Innovation General Manager for Trade, Michael Rogers, said the export results not only demonstrated the value of Taste Australia activities, but also positioned the Australian horticultural industry well within foreign markets.

“Australia has a solid reputation for delivering high-end produce that has undergone the most rigorous inspections along all stages of the supply chain, and the Taste Australia brand builds on this,” he said.

“We have been exhibiting at Asia Fruit Logistica for more than 10 years. When Taste Australia launched last year, we found it increased our engagement with key stakeholders across Asia."

“Through the Taste Australia brand, we are strengthening our homegrown produce on a global stage, bringing high quality, high-end premium goods to international markets.”

The Taste Australia campaign is funded by Hort Innovation using industry research, development and marketing levies and funds from the Australian Government.

Key Export Statistics
In the year ending June 2018, more than 264,000 tonnes of fresh citrus was exported valued at more than $440 million. Citrus exports were dominated by oranges ($280 million) and mandarins ($140 million).

Export values across combined citrus (including grapefruit, lemons, limes, mandarins, oranges) increased 48 per cent in just two years from $297 Million in 2015/16.

The single most valuable horticulture product exported was table grapes, achieving exports valued at $384 million. The value of table grape exports has grown consecutively over the last seven years.

For more information;
Farah Abdurahman
Tel: +61 447 304 255
Email: Farah.Abdurahman@horticulture.com.au
www.tasteaustralia.net.au
Publication date: 9/3/2018

 

Source: http://www.freshplaza.com

Indonesia boost for Australian exporters

Indonesia-Australia Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement will mean reduced tariffs and greater opportunities

Australian farmers will have tariffs reduced and be able to export more agricultural products including citrus to Indonesia, after the coalition government signed the Indonesia-Australia Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (IA-CEPA).

It gives producers and exporters the opportunity to grow their A$3.5bn share of the Indonesian market - indeed, Indonesia is Australi's fourth-largest agricultural export destination.

Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources David Littleproud said the coalition government continued to deliver farmers better access to more markets.

“This agreement improve access for industries which trade most to Indonesia, including our livestock, beef and sheepmeat, grains, sugar, dairy, citrus and horticulture,” he said.

“Oranges and limes will get increased duty-free access while dairy, mandarins, potatoes and carrots will get reduced tariffs," he confirmed.

The conclusion of substantive negotiation of IA-CEPA was signed in Indonesia by Australian prime minister Scott Morrison.

Key agricultural outcomes of the IA-CEPA include immediate tariff cuts on mandarins from 25 per cent to 10 per cent for 7,500 tonnes per year, down to 0 per cent after 20 years for an unlimited volume, and duty free access for 10,000 tonnes of oranges per year, increasing 5 per cent each year, as well as duty free access for 5,000 tonnes of lemons and limes per year, increasing 2.5 per cent each year.

The agreement also means immediate tariff cuts for potatoes from 25 per cent to 10 per cent for 10,000 tonnes per year; after five years tariff further reduced to 5 per cent for 12,500 tonnes per year, increasing by 2.5 per cent per year, and immediate tariff cuts for carrots from 25 per cent to 10 per cent (from 25 per cent) for 5,000 tonnes per year; down to 0 per cent after 15 years for an unlimited volume.

Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources MEDIA RELEASE


The Hon. David Littleproud MP

Friday, 31 August 2018

Indonesia trade boost for Australian farmers

• Indonesia-Australia Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (IA-CEPA) signed this week
• Improves market access for Australian livestock, beef and sheepmeat, grains, sugar, dairy, citrus and horticulture
• Allows farmers to grow their $3.5 billion share of the Indonesian market

Australian farmers will have tariffs reduced and be able to export more livestock, beef and sheep meat, grains, sugar, dairy, citrus and horticulture produce to Indonesia after the Coalition Government today signed the Indonesia-Australia Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (IA-CEPA).


Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources David Littleproud said the Coalition Government continued to deliver farmers better access to more markets.


“This agreement improve access for industries which trade most to Indonesia, including our livestock, beef and sheepmeat, grains, sugar, dairy, citrus and horticulture,” Minister Littleproud said.
“This agreement delivers duty free access for half a million tonnes of feed grains per year.
“Our wheat industry exported $1.3 billion worth of produce to Indonesia in 2016-17 and this will grow that further.
”The agreement will increase duty free access for live male cattle by 4 per cent a year to 700,000 head annually.
“Tariffs on most lines of beef and sheepmeat will be reduced from 5 to 0 per cent immediately, with all remaining tariffs to be removed after five years. This will help us build on the $261 million that these exports were worth to Australia in 2016-17.
“Our grain farmers will get guaranteed duty free access for 500,000 tonnes of wheat, barely and sorghum grains per year increasing at 5% per year to 775,664 tonnes.
“Tariffs on our sugar cane will drop from as high as 12 per cent to 5 per cent.
“Oranges and limes will get increased duty-free access while dairy, mandarins, potatoes and carrots will get reduced tariffs.”
Minister Littleproud thanked former trade Minister Steve Ciobo for his hard work on this agreement, and also thanked the trade division of the Australian Department of Agriculture.
The conclusion of substantive negotiation of IA-CEPA was signed today in Indonesia by Australian Prime Minister, Scott Morrison.

Background facts:
• Indonesia is our fourth most important agriculture market
* Agriculture makes up almost half of our total exports to Indonesia - worth $3.5 billion to our economy.
* Australia’s top agriculture exports in 2016-17 to Indonesia include wheat ($1.3 billion), sugar ($541 million) and live feeder/slaughter cattle ($620 million).

Key agricultural outcomes from the IA-CEPA include:
More than 99% of Australian goods exports to Indonesia will enter duty free or under significantly improved and preferential arrangements.
• Duty free access for 575,000 head of live male cattle per year, growing at 4% per year to 700,000 at year five of the agreement.
• Remaining tariffs on all Australian exports of frozen beef and sheepmeat into Indonesia reduced to 2.5% immediately, and eliminated after 5 years.
• Guaranteed duty free access for 500,000 tonnes of feed grains per year (wheat, barley, sorghum), increasing at 5% per year to 775,664 tonnes.
• Reducing the tariff on Australian sugar cane from 8-12 % to 5%.
• Immediate elimination of 5% tariff for milk and cream, concentrated or containing added sugar or other sweetening matter.
• Immediate elimination of 5% tariff for grated or powdered cheese, of all kinds.
• Immediate tariff cut mandarins from 25% to 10% for 7,500 tonnes per year; down to 0% after 20 years for an unlimited volume.
• Duty free access for 10,000 tonnes of oranges per year, increasing 5% each year.
• Duty free access for 5,000 tonnes of lemons and limes per year, increasing 2.5% each year.
• Immediate tariff cuts for potatoes from 25% to 10% for 10,000 tonnes per year; after five years tariff further reduced to 5% for 12,500 tonnes per year, increasing by 2.5% per year.
• Immediate tariff cuts for carrots from 25% to 10% (from 25%) for 5,000 tonnes per year; down to 0% after 15 years for an unlimited volume.
• Progressive elimination of 5% tariff on Australian honey after 15 years.
Media Contact:
Les White, 0409 805 122

Tariff elimination to boost Australian cherries in China, says importer

Australian cherries are set to benefit from the elimination of tariffs in the Chinese market from the start of next year, according to one importer.

A free trade agreement was signed between the two countries in 2014, with Australian cherry exporters to be subject to zero-tariffs in China from Jan. 1, 2019.

Huang Xianhua, general manager of Shanghai Oheng Import & Export Co., told Fresh Fruit Portal Australian cherries would therefore be on a level playing field with Chile in terms of tariffs.

Chile signed an FTA with China in 2005, and sends the vast majority of its cherries to the Asian country.

Xianhua added that Australia’s higher production costs compared to Chile would be partially offset by its relative proximity to the market, while will save freight costs and make the country more competitive.

Australia is expected to produce a record 18,000 metric tons (MT) of cherries this year, with a little under half due to be exported, according to a USDA forecast. Meanwhile, Chile is expecting to export similar volumes to last season, which saw a huge export rise to 180,000MT.

And according to Xianhua, Chile faces numerous challenges with cherries.

“The processing capacity during the peak of harvest is insufficient, production is easily affected by weather conditions, and the quality is inconsistent, but they are hesitant to invest in protection such as rain nets if the investment it too big,” he said.

U.S.-China trade war
Xianhua also said that the U.S.-China trade war has led to a poor performance of U.S. cherries in the Chinese market this year. China has risen tariffs on the fruit by 40% over recent months, with the latest round coming into effect on July 6.

“This is an enormous cost and is unable to completely be shifted to the consumer end. In the end, the importers have to pay this extra bill,” he said.

Many importers stopped bringing in U.S. cherries while those who continued have run into difficulties, he said.

Other origins have been unable to fill the supply gap, he added.

“There is no [country] that can fully replace it. Canada’s supply is still limited, and Central Asian’s season is too early, also the quality is not good enough and they also have to worry about cold treatment,” he said.

 

Source: https://www.freshfruitportal.com