Home' Cherry Magazine : Cherry summer 2017-18 Contents EXPORTS
horticulture.com.au/grower-focus/cherry | Summer 2017-18
As Australian cherry growers eye the coveted, recently re-opened export markets in China and Vietnam,
Cherry magazine spoke to Hort Innovation general manager for trade Michael Rogers and Cherry
Growers Association president Tom Eastlake about the latest developments with these crucial buyers.
Why are China and Vietnam important
markets for the Australian cherry industry?
Michael Rogers: Both China and Vietnam
have large and growing middle-class and
higher-income consumers who are looking
to taste safe, fresh Australian produce.
Australian cherries are renowned for their
superior quality and taste – and are much in
demand across Asia during Australia’s cherry
season. This year, Australian producers
expect a bumper crop of cherries, meaning
that the additional market access into
Vietnam and China – both markets with large
populations and familiarity with Australian
produce – will provide extra sources of
demand for cherry growers.
What was the process involved in terms
of gaining access to these markets
(negotiations, meetings, etc)?
MR: Negotiations for new and improved
market access are ongoing between
the governments of Australia and those
markets to which we seek to export. The
Department of Agriculture and Water
Resources leads negotiations to establish
and improve market access through regular
technical meetings and exchanges with
their counterparts in export markets. These
negotiations are detailed, and include many
considerations such as treatment options.
Consequently, negotiations can be lengthy.
It is encouraging to see the finalisation of
the export protocols with both Vietnam and
China in a short space of time, and ahead
of the current cherry season.
What had to change in order for Australia
to gain access?
MR: The process of gaining access
into a market, or improving an existing
phytosanitary protocol, involves detailed
technical negotiations between the
exporting and importing market. It is
important that both sides are comfortable
that their concerns around pest and
diseases and treatment options are being
addressed during the negotiations, to reach
an outcome that is commercially viable.
Each phytosanitary protocol involves a
different product into a specific market, and
will therefore have a range of different risk
factors that need to be addressed.
What is attractive about Australian
cherries in these markets?
MR: Chinese and Vietnamese consumers,
along with consumers across Asia,
view Australian cherries as a premium,
special product. The distinct flavour and
quality of Australian cherries also makes
them a special treat for gift-giving,
particularly around Chinese New Year
and Tet in China and Vietnam. Australia’s
close geographic proximity, and ability
to supply cherries into market in a short
time frame, ensures that consumers
receive cherries in a high-quality state.
Will Australia be exporting cherries to
China and Vietnam in the current
2017-18 production season?
Tom Eastlake: Vietnam is open now
and Australian growers are already
shipping a volume of cherries there. (In
the first week of December, the NSW
Department of Primary Industries said a
total of about 100 pallets of cherries had
been exported from NSW and Victoria
to Vietnam already this season.) China
has only just been signed and we are
awaiting finalisation of the protocol prior
to commencing shipping.
Are these likely to be markets where
premium prices can be achieved?
TE: These will both be premium fruit
markets. They will demand premium
fruit, but premium prices can be
achieved for those who ensure quality
is maintained. Both markets appreciate
the freshness standard that only the
Australian market can provide due to our
proximity and availability of air freight.
The project Export readiness and
market access (CY16004) is funded
by Hort Innovation using the cherry
R&D levy and contributions from the
Crucial doors open
ARE RENOWNED FOR THEIR
SUPERIOR QUALITY AND
TASTE – AND ARE MUCH IN
DEMAND ACROSS ASIA DURING
AUSTRALIA’S CHERRY SEASON.”
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