Japan has granted market access for Australian pumpkins and melons following recent bi-lateral discussions between the two countries.
This paves the way for Aussie pumpkins to be exported to Japan immediately.
It’s a lucrative export market for the industry as it imports more than 100,000 tonnes of pumpkins yearly around the world. The free trade agreement exempts tariffs for these local produce.
“Japan is one of Australia’s largest export markets for horticultural produce, with total vegetable exports worth $44 million in 2015-2016, up five per cent on the previous year,” said Michael Coote, national manager for export development of AUSVEG, a horticultural organisation.
Furthermore, it paves way for Australia to be in a stronger position in terms of meeting the high demand for top quality vegetable produce in Japan. Thus, making it a huge growth opportunity as well for farmers.
“AUSVEG organised a successful trade mission to Japan earlier this year, where Australian vegetable growers were able to display their high quality produce to key buyers and develop trade relationships. A number of these buyers have also travelled to Australia to see our vegetable growing operations in action,” Coote further explained.
Currently, the main challenge is for local farmers to study different pumpkin varieties that are well known in Japan so they can produce them to meet the demand of Japanese consumers. Horticulture Innovation Australia receives funding from the Australian government for the vegetable industry export development activities.