News — June 5, 2018 at 6:10 pm

Persimmons: Australia’s Next Export Product?

Open market with various fruits and vegetablesPersimmons could be a viable export product for farmers in Australia, due to the tropical fruit’s growing popularity that has caused a five-year wait list for interested growers.

The level of production has been stable as well, after reaching a value of $10.5 million for more than 2,500 tonnes mainly in New South Wales, Queensland, Victoria and South Australia.

Exploring New Opportunities

The growth in production has led persimmon farmers to consider exporting the product. While a majority of produce is sold nationwide, there were 143 tonnes of exports sent to Hong Kong, Malaysia, and Singapore.

ADEX GROUP adds that raised storage solutions will be more necessary if the country wants to export its products. This is because spoilage remains a key concern for most farmers, especially during extreme weather conditions. Persimmons also belonged to a group of six new fruit categories that could be distributed overseas, based on Hort Innovation’s Australian Tropical Fruit Export Strategies 2023 report

Other Fruit Categories

Bananas, limes, lychees, papaya, and passion fruit are the other tropical fruits that could be a new source of export business, according to Hort Innovation CEO John Lloyd. He believes that papayas could be the most difficult to export overseas since they perish easily, while bananas would be the easiest among the group.

However, some farmers believe that production capacity should be stable first before even considering a concrete plan, particularly for persimmons. Once production stabilises, the best market destinations would comprise countries such as Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Thailand, and the United Arab Emirates. There are less than 100 persimmon farmers in Australia, yet this number may reach up to 150 within five years given the strong commercial demand.

A higher production capacity of persimmons and other fruit categories will be just as important as thinking of better storage solutions. Whether you are interested in the export business or not, any inefficiency in storage would mean financial losses due to spoiled produce.