It is hoped that this week's launch of market access for Australian avocados in Japan can pave the way for other fresh produce items in the near future.
“Table grapes and citrus fruits are already established export products in the Japanese market and their market success has demonstrated a willingness by consumers to pay a premium price for high-quality produce,” Hort Innovation CEO Matt Brand said. “We are confident that this new market access opportunity will enhance trade relations with Japan, and in time, open up market access for other premium fresh fruit and vegetable items.”
Australian avocados are the latest premium fresh fruit product to be exported to Japan, cementing new trade relations and market opportunities for our horticultural products.
The “Aussie Avo” has been ceremoniously launched at a high-profile event at the Australian embassy, with Government officials from both sides in attendance, along with Japanese importers and retailers as well as industry representatives from Hort Innovation and Avocados Australia.
Mr Brand says Australia has built a solid reputation for its premium quality fresh fruit and vegetables and is globally recognised for delivering high-end produce that has undergone the most rigorous inspections along all stages of the supply chain.
“Japan is wholly dependent on avocado imports for their national supply. Until now, their avocados were predominantly sourced from Mexico and to a lesser extent, Peru, the US and New Zealand," he said. "Introducing our premium Australian avocados into the marketplace offers Japanese consumers a point of difference to their current supply, which will deepen their affinity for Australian products and strengthen trade ties with local exporters."
Avocados Australia CEO John Tyas says the new trade agreement was very exciting news for the industry, and acknowledged the cumulative hard work by all agencies involved in making the trade agreement possible.
"It is very exciting for the industry that we can now add Japan to our exclusive list of export destinations for our top-quality premium Hass avocados,” he said. “The industry in Australia is growing rapidly and we are very confident that Australia will be producing about 115,000 tonnes of avocados per year by 2025. “This is 50 per cent more than our current production, and expanding our domestic and international markets is essential.”
In addition to the Japanese market, Avocados Australia is also working actively to open new export markets to ensure sustainable growth of the industry into the future.
“Australia will always be a supplier of top-quality Premium avocados, mainly Hass, in the international market, rather than a bulk supplier,” he said. “At the moment, we export less than 5 per cent of our production annually but that will increase as our production increases. Gaining access to new markets ahead of that increased supply is a high priority for the Australian industry, as is boosting our current markets, Malaysia and Singapore in particular.”
Australia’s avocado production increased by 17 per cent in 2017/18, with a gross value of production estimated at $557 million.