According to a statement by the Council of Agriculture (COA), the first shipment of Taiwan mangoes and lychees to Japan this year under a new contract with China Airlines departed on Tuesday. The shipment comprised 20 tons of lychees and 10 metric tons of Irwin mangoes, from five different domestic fruit suppliers, transported on a specially contracted CAL flight, according to the COA's Department of International Affairs.
Since the start of the year, Taiwan's fruit exports have been affected by the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, the agricultural department said.
In an effort to help address the situation, department said, it recently coordinated with the Taiwan Vegetables and Fruits Exporters Association (TVFEA) to arrange for the shipment of fruit to Japan via CAL, Taiwan's flagship carrier.
The TVFEA fruit exports to Japan will continue on Tuesdays and Wednesdays on specially contacted CAL flights until the end of June, the department said.
In Taiwan, it is currently the season for mangoes and lychees, which are very popular among Japanese consumers, the department said. Last year, Japan absorbed 99 tons of Taiwan's total 103 metric tons of lychee exports, valued at NT$30 million (US$1 million), according to the department. Taiwan also exported 657 tons of mangoes worth NT$160 million to Japan in 2019.