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Historical document

Vitor citrus grower study tour to Japan, Korea and Hong Kong, 2011 (CT11700)

Key research provider: AgriExchange Pty Ltd
Publication date: September, 2011

This is a final research report from Hort Innovation’s historical archives. Please note that as these reports may date back as far as the 1990s, the content and recommendations within them may be superseded by more recent research.

What was it all about?

As a major producer of southern hemisphere navel oranges, the Australian citrus industry had and would continue to face enormous challenges from lower cost producers such as Chile, Peru, Argentina and South Africa. These challenges had become exacerbated with the significant  rise  in  the  Australian  dollar  and  the  weakening  of  the  US  dollar  and  the  fact  that  Chile had gained market access into the United States, a traditional market that had been extremely important for Australian citrus for the previous 19 years.

In  view  of  these  challenges  it  was  important  to  maximize  Australia's export  opportunities,  to  increase  consumption of our citrus products in Asia, and to identify new market opportunities. Asia had been an important market for Australian navel oranges and volumes of Australian navels have steadily  increased  into  these  markets  over  the  previous two  seasons  as  a  result  of  the  challenges  highlighted.

Japan became Australia’s most important export market for citrus at the time, in both volume and gross dollars. Since the introduction of area freedom in the Riverland, exports to Japan increased  significantly  making  this  a  strategically  important  market.  This  season  other  production regions (Sunraysia, Riverina) faced fruit fly issues which gave the Riverland pest free area a significant cost advantage.

Korea was a country that had a high consumption of citrus and was serviced extensively during the winter months by the United States. In 2011 a new market access protocol was developed for Australian  citrus  exports  to  the  Korean  market.  Significant  effort  and  expense  was  required  to  comply with the pest control protocols that had been enforced by the importing country. This market was relatively new for Australian citrus but would be very important in the future.

Hong  Kong  had  and  continued  to  be  a  very  important  market  for  Australian  product  and  still  remained critical for our business.

The  objective  of  this  citrus  grower  tour  was  to  take  leading  growers/packers  along  with  marketing staff to visit strategically important markets and to gain firsthand experience of how Australia products were performing compared to other suppliers both nationally and internationally. It had also given growers the opportunity to determine what issues needed to be addressed at farm, packing and marketing level. Grower visits into these markets also sent a clear message to our customers  that  they were  committed  to  the  market  and  were  prepared  to  discuss  and address any issues raised during such a visit.


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Funding statement:
This project was funded by Hort Innovation (then Horticulture Australia Limited) with the financial support of Vitor Marketing Pty Ltd.

Copyright © Horticulture Innovation Australia Limited 2012. The Final Research Report (in part or as whole) cannot be reproduced, published, communicated or adapted without the prior written consent of Hort Innovation (except as may be permitted under the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth)).