Aussie citrus industry looks to Asia
Citrus Australia is conducting 'significant work' into opening up market access in Southeast Asia and Korea, reported the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC).
The group's general manager of marketing told the ABC the move was aimed at giving more export options for citrus growers than the U.S., which has been more difficult in recent years through increased competition with Chile, Peru and South Africa.
"We now face a situation where a lot of suppliers are saying they're not really prepared to continue to incur losses in that market, especially the second half of the season in the US, and are looking for alternative destinations to send their fruit," he was quoted as saying.
Elsewhere in Australia, horticulture industry group Growcom has welcomed the Queensland Government's move to lift eligibility for Natural Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements from Category C to Category D.
Growcom chief advocate Rachel Mackenzie said the announcement meant farmers in flood affected areas could access concessional loans of up to AUD$650,000 (US$659,000) with a grant component of up to AUD$50,000 (US$50,720), in a similar way to the options given to farmers affected by Cyclone Yasi.
She said it was not yet clear whether wage subsidies would be included in the arrangement.
"Wage subsidies are crucial to enable growers to retain and attract farm labour in order to carry out clean up work on farms in preparation for the establishment of new crops."