NZ to push avocado exports to South East Asia -

NZ to push avocado exports to South East Asia

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NZ to push avocado exports to South East Asia

New Zealand's avocado exports are set to nearly double this year with growers looking to boost markets in Japan, Korea, Singapore and Malaysia, website reported.

Avocados were New Zealand's third-largest fresh fruit export in 2010/11 with overseas sales worth $NZ67 million (US$52 million).

Avocado Industry Council chief executive Jen Scoular, said finding new markets was key for the industry.

"The domestic market can't really take any more, all of the extra volume has to be exported," she was quoted as saying.

Exporters have agreed to try to market at least a quarter of their volume outside Australia.

Primor Produce export manager Ted Thomas told the website the industry was aware it needed to look further afield.

"If people don't do the right thing, there will be some real spikes in supply, so it's important we manage it responsibly, then all growers can benefit," he stressed.

Four of the major exporters selling into Japan have embarked on a joint venture, Avanza, to represent their interests there and in the U.S. with technical advice for importers on how to store and ripen fruit.

About 5.8 million trays (31,900 metric tons) of avocados are expected to be produced in New Zealand this year, which is almost double last season's 3.1 million trays and 20% more than the previous record harvest, the story reported.

New Zealand Avocado exporters are to host dozens of Japanese food journalists this week to explain the fruit's versatility and health benefits.

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