The pitaya, also known as 'swallow nest fruit', is one of the rarer fruits in the Chinese market. This cactus fruit originates in South America. The pitaya is related to the red dragon fruit, but has sharp thorns and a yellow fruit peel. The Chinese market previously relied on import for pitaya supply, but this year domestic pitaya have taken the market by storm
According to Ms. Chen Xiaowei of Fushan Fruit Industry Co., Ltd., the sales season of Hainan pitaya has only just begun. Fushan Fruit Industry closely cooperates with Hainan farmers. The farmers are responsible for production, while the company invests in marketing and retail.
When asked about the current conditions in the Hainan pitaya industry, Ms. Chen replied: "We grow our pitaya in Hainan. We spent several years experimenting and the production volume was therefore quite small. This is the first year that we've enjoyed an abundant harvest. We can produce around 1,250 kg of pitaya on every 0.07 hectare of good farmland. The overall production volume was quite impressive this year, and much higher than last year. The level of plantation technology continues to rise and the Hainan farmers gain more and more understanding and skill in the cultivation of this cactus fruit. The pitaya is gradually adapted for optimum performance under local conditions. There are only a few people involved in the production and retail of the pitaya, but the economic value of this fruit is quite high. We believe that this fruit will attract a lot more people very quickly."
"In the end, however, this fruit is a minority taste in the Chinese fruit market. The pitaya is only available in a handful of high-end wholesale markets and specialized fruit stores. Most of the pitaya are imported. We sell our pitaya to clients throughout the country via e-commerce platforms. Many of our clients come from the Jiangsu, Zhejiang, Shanghai area. The retail price of a single pitaya is currently around 80 yuan [11.21 USD] or more. The price is quite stable."
The Hainan pitaya is not the same as the red dragon fruit. This is not just about the color of the fruit peel. The taste is also different. Ms. Chen explained this as follows: "The red dragon fruit has a sugar content of 15-18, but the sugar content of pitaya is more than 21. Furthermore, the fruit flesh of the pitaya holds more liquid. The pitaya has more seeds. The fruit flesh is shiny and translucent. And the flavor is exceptional. The fruit is as smooth as an edible swallow's nest, hence the name 'swallow nest fruit'. This year the flavor, product quality, and production volume are all quite good. The sugar content is higher than 21. Hainan pitaya remain on the cactus until they are 90% ripe and harvested. The freshness, flavor, and sweetness all improve the longer the fruit remains on the cactus. The flavor and product quality of Hainan pitaya can match the flavor and product quality of imported pitaya."
For more information:
Ms. Chen Xiaowei
Fushan Fruit Industry
Tel.: +86 180 8984 1070