The ATGA Chief Executive Officer Jeff Scott, today commended the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources Plant Division for their dedication in working with all with all parties to achieve this outcome.
“The ATGA and the Plant Division have been working solidly over the last 12 months to get in place these important revisions to the 2011 protocol, which will be a real enabler for significant growth for the Australian table grape industry,” said Mr Scott.
At seasons end for 2016/2017 harvest, the Australian table grape exports totalled 106,841 tonnes, worth an estimated $373 million.
“China is our largest market. Last year’s harvest saw 40% of our total exports going to markets in China,” said Mr Scott.
ATGA now predicts an increase of 20,000 tonnes to China in the next two to three years.
“We estimate that with these changes to the protocol, the value of the exports will be worth an additional $100 million to the industry,” said Mr Scott.
The agreed revisions relating to fumigation and cold treatment will allow for exports directly into China.
“In particular new markets will be opened up in northern China, servicing what are known as second tier cities,” said Mr Scott.
“The revisions to fumigation post-harvest and the introduction of four days cold treatment are a game changer because it will open up a whole new market in China for our growers and they will be able to deliver to market after only 4 days,” said Mr Scott.
“Also of note is the move to allow 18 days cold storage at 3 degrees. Previously growers have had to cold store for 21 days at 2.1 degrees,” said Mr Scott.
“This change will facilitate greater flexibility in transportation of produce to market and assistance growers to meet customer demands in a timelier manner.” said Mr Scott.
The revisions also recognise the Riverland as a Pest Free Area, meaning that growers in that region can now air freight without having to undertake post-harvest treatment.
Chief Executive Officer – Australia Table Grape Association
M: +61 417 122 086