Fiji imports $21.4m of fresh fruit annually
April 21, 2019 3:37 pm
Fiji’s import bill for fresh fruit stands at $21.4 million annually.
The Agriculture Ministry says we also spend an additional $0.33 million on buying of processed fruit.
This of course is a worrying trend, lending Fiji into a trade deficit that the Ministry will not entertain.
Agriculture Development Deputy Secretary, Jone Sovalawa says there is potential to reduce these imports by 50% through producing more local fruits.
Sovalawa adds local fruit such as banana, papaya and pineapple are meeting the tourism needs while apples, oranges, pears and grapes are being imported.
The Ministry says if the sector can produce quality products in the correct quantity, on a consistence basis, this issue can be solved.
He says the Establishment of Fruit Tree Orchards initiative is one way of linking the tourism and agriculture sector in Fiji.
Under the Establishment of the initiative, the Ministry ensures the setting up of organized orchards of selected fruits in strategic locations to make fruits readily available to locals as well as the tourism industry and for our export markets.
The Ministry says farmers will soon be provided with seedlings of the newly introduced fruit varieties.