The Tainan International Mango Festival, which runs this year from June 26 to July 12, comes at the peak of the city's mango season and includes a variety of mango-themed events.
Tainan Mayor Huang Wei-che told the crowd at Tsou Ma Lai Farm in Tainan, southern Taiwan, that despite COVID-19, the city's export of mangoes has grown by 14 percent since January this year compared to the same period last year.
Taiwan's government has taken extraordinary steps to ensure a steady supply of the fruit to overseas markets, including Japan, despite the cancellation of international flights amid the pandemic. Chartered flights were arranged twice a week through state-owned China Airlines to ship a total of 60 tons of mangoes, and other agricultural produce a week to Japan, according to Agricultural and Food Agency Director General Hu Jong-i.
On average, Taiwan produces about 150,000 tons of mangoes a year, with a value of NT$7.7 billion ($260 million). But, only about 6 percent of total mango production makes its way to overseas markets.
As explained on mainichi.jp, East Asia makes up the bulk of exports. Last year, mainland China and Hong Kong alone accounted for nearly 80 percent of Taiwanese mango exports.