Dragon fruit to be exported from Vietnam to Australia, Japan
Recently, experts from Australia’s Department of Agriculture and Water Resources have been on fact-finding tours of Vietnamese provinces to evaluate their dragon fruit production, packaging and exports. According to experts, once a product is allowed to enter the Australian market, doors would open for it in other markets too.
The visit was one of the final steps before Australia opened its market to fresh dragon fruit from Vietnam, according to the Plant Protection Department.
The Australian Government would release a draft report on the evaluation outcomes at the end of this year for stakeholders’ benefit, and possibly allow the import of Vietnamese white and red dragon fruits by the end of this year or early next year, it said.
It has also worked with Japanese authorities and Vietnamese fresh dragon fruits could be exported to that country in the near future, it said.
Fruit exports to several demanding markets had increases in 2016, it said, with exporters shipping more than 4,608 tonnes to the US, Japan, South Korea, and New Zealand in the first half of the year, a year-on-year increase of 81 per cent.
According to the Vietnam Trade Office in Australia, Australia imports fruits and vegetables worth $1.7-2 billion from other countries.
According to the General Department of Vietnam Customs, total exports to Australia were worth over $1.3 billion this year, with fruits and vegetables accounting for a mere $10.3 million.
Explaining why the exports of Vietnamese fruits and vegetables to Australia remain modest, experts pointed to the stringent quarantine system there. ■