With more markets opening up in Asia and international trade agreements being formed – and broken - there is still plenty of scope for companies to start trading in the region. Some companies lack the knowledge and experience to trade confidently with these counties and find it difficult to gauge the market.
Kingfisher Fresh International is still in its first year of trading but its Managing Director, Andrew Grantham has been dealing with Asia for a number of years.
“We have had a good first year,” said Andrew. “With a supplier of South African citrus onboard and Egyptian suppliers of grapes and citrus. With more areas of China opening up for import of fruit and vegetables, the potential is huge. The trade war and tariffs imposed on US goods are also creating opportunities for other suppliers into China. Markets are opening faster than at anytime in the last five years.”
Kingfisher Fresh International provides a bridge for suppliers who want someone with insight into, not only China, but also the many other Asian markets.
Andrew will be at Asia Fruit Logistica again this year where he says it is an important place to build relationships with growers from around the world who want to supply the Asia markets.
“Asian markets are looking for a brand with the right quality and we are making good progress into providing those properties within fresh produce. This year there are more UK companies exhibiting than ever before, the Asian market has great potential for them, be it in fruit or salads or cucumbers.
The value of the Pound and Brexit are just a couple of reasons to look for new export markets. In some cases, it may be a case of changing the mindset of the UK growers who are accustomed to supplying British retailers. They need to understand how important branding and presentation is in the Far and Middle Eastern markets and find the right people to work with. Distance is not really a factor these days as air freight is available making the UK competitive in distant markets.”
Kingfisher Fresh is building a good portfolio of brands in Asia and are looking to extend that with suppliers from around the world.