Chile scores Chinese nectarine market access -

Chile scores Chinese nectarine market access

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Chile scores Chinese nectarine market access

First it was Australia. Now another Southern Hemisphere fruit exporter has gained access to the lucrative Chinese nectarine market. nectarines_1695950-shutterstock-edit

Chilean Agriculture Minister Carlos Furche announced today the Chinese market had officially opened for his country's nectarines, following three years of negotiations between authorities.

The efforts made by the industry, Chile's Agriculture and Livestock Service (SAG) and China's General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine (AQSIQ) mean the market will open in November.

Furche made the announcement during the promotional event Chile Week in the United States, highlighting Chile currently exported US$50 million worth of nectarines worldwide each year.

"The benefits are clear from here on for nectarine growers and exporters because it gives them access to a dynamic expanding market, which also opens their possibilities for diversifying shipments," Furche said in a release.

"On the other hand, this could also help them to cope with the complexities that were being observed in the trade, due to a rise in new supplies of this fruit from other countries, both from the European Union and other countries in the Southern Hemisphere."

This year Spain became the first country to gain access to the Chinese nectarine market in a deal that also included peaches and plums, however complicated protocols and Russia not allowing through-country transit made the campaign a challenge.

Of likely greater relevance to the Chilean industry will be competition from Australia, which has a similar season and is closer to the market, but has higher labor costs.

The news was welcomed by Chilean Fruit Exporters Association (ASOEX) president Ronald Bown.

"This means that instead of selling a limited quantity of boxes of nectarines we're able to export a potential that could eventually reach one million boxes in China," he said.

"This measure was absolutely necessary to be able to start the season and export nectarines normally. With this, more than 500 growers will benefit, which will also transfer to the workers who will see their conditions improved."

After the final text is revised by both countries, it is expected the protocol will be signed during a visit to Chile from Chinese Xi Jinping next month.

Chile's most recent horticultural export breakthroughs in China include access for in-shell walnuts and prunes in "natural condition", while other crops that have found significant opportunities in recent years include cherries, blueberries, cherries and grapes.


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