NZ growers concerned with spread of locally grown Sungold kiwifruit in China

According to Zespri chief executive Dan Mathieson, 20 years ago the Chinese market took 2% of New Zealand’s kiwifruit exports, but it now takes 20%. This makes China one of Zespri’s highest-returning markets and one that is very important.

In recent times more Chinese consumers have also wanted to support local production, so NZ producers need to find ways of contributing to China’s supply in the season that works for them. After an uncertain beginning in which mistakes were made, Zespri now has 100 people in China having conversations with officials and partners.

However, NZ growers here are concerned with the spread of locally grown Sungold kiwifruit in China and want to see more IP protection. Mathieson: “It is a huge market and there is room to co-exist with the locally produced kiwifruit. While we want strong Zespri brand awareness, we also want to grow the category alongside strong domestic brands.”

Zespri’s sale projections to 2030 include doubling the volume going to China, and 50% of sales being made online.


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