The Ministry for Agricultural Policy, the Italian Embassy in Beijing, the phytosanitary services of the Emilia Romagna and Sicily region and business all cooperated during this visit.
The visit ended in Rome at the Ministry for Agricultural, Food and Forestry Policy with representatives from the National Phytosanitary Service.
Inspectors assessed the facilities, equipment and technical methods used for cold treatment. Together with company representatives, regional phytosanitary inspectors showed their Chinese colleagues how the various passages required by the protocols are implemented. The visit was also an occasion to assess the entire production chain.
Now the Chinese authorities will send their official report to the Ministry. The hope is for the shipments of citrus fruit and kiwis to start soon. In addition, cold treatments could favour shipments with other means of transport as well, such as for example trains.
Kiwi exports to China have recently exceeded 13,000 tons a year. The data concerning the latest campaign is not available yet, but around 3,600 tons had already been shipped in October against the 1,800 of the previous year.
The Chinese market is very interesting for blood oranges as well, and this mission was essential to make the delegation understand just how important it is to keep transit times to a minimum to maintain quality standards high.
"This mission is very important for companies and it proves how it's important not only to sign protocols but also how conditions must be improved over time. This was all made possible thanks to the effort, hard work and professionalism of the companies that have been exporting to China as well as to the checks implemented so far," explained Simona Rubbi, manager for the opening of new markets at CSO Italy.