CANBERRA: America is looming as a major customer for Australian mangoes and is expected to import up to 200 tonnes this season, compared to just 5 tonnes last year.
The first trays for 2016 are due to land in Los Angeles next week, and there to supervise their arrival will be Michael Daysh, a market development officer with the Northern Territory Department of Primary Industry.
“I’ll be there to look at as many arrivals as possible over the next couple of weeks. We’re expecting six to seven shipments,” Mr Daysh said.
“My job is to have a solid look at that fruit and report back to exporters and growers. “I’ll be sending emails with pictures and details [and] we’ll be looking for consistency of arrival and looking for happy importers and happy retailers.” The mango trade to the US started last year, with Australia exporting 5 tonnes of Calypso and Keitt mangoes.
About 20 growers and six exporters are now involved in the trade, with a wider range of varieties heading there this season, including Kensington Pride, R2E2s and Honey Gold. Mr Daysh said the trade was growing solidly and the industry had set a target of exporting up to 1 million trays to America in 2020.
He said all the mangoes had so far been sourced from Queensland, but there were a number of Northern Territory growers interested in the US export market and would likely get involved during the 2016/17 season.