11th June 2021 By Paul Yandall | email@example.com | @foodtickernz
New Zealand avocado sales topped $227m for the 2020-21 season, up 47% on the $154m recorded for the previous year.
The growth was driven by a big increase in export earnings, primarily from Australia, which totalled $167m for 2020-21, as well as 20% growth in the domestic market, which returned $60m.
“This is an extraordinary result for the avocado industry” said NZ Avocado chief executive Jen Scoular in a statement on Thursday.
“Facing the season with Covid lockdowns, significant freight disruption, an inability to meet face to face with customers and a small fruit profile, it is a credit to the entire value chain to achieve this record result.”
The latest season saw 5.1 million 5.5kg trays delivered to 11 export markets, an increase in volume of 10% on the previous season.
Exports to Australia, the biggest market for New Zealand avocados, jumped 45% to 4.2 million 5.5kg trays due to constrained domestic supplies allowing for more imports and good volumes out of Kiwi crops.
However, that growth may not be maintained with NZ Avocado expecting Australian domestic supply to increase considerably this year and over the coming five years. New plantings in Western Australia are expected to boost production in that state, which saw a depleted crop this past season.
The association said around 500,000 trays were exported to eight markets across Asia, of which Thailand was the largest market, followed by Taiwan and Singapore. Volumes fell in some markets due to sea and air freight disruption.
Scoular said around 2.5 million trays worth over $60m were sold in New Zealand in the 2020-21 season.
“The New Zealand market is the second largest market for New Zealand avocados and has seen significant growth in the past five years, from what was a $30m market in 2015,” she said.
“We continue to invest in avocado promotion in New Zealand to communicate the wonderful nutrients and versatility of avocados to New Zealand consumers.”
NZ Avocado said planning was underway for New Zealand to host the biggest global gathering of the industry, the World Avocado Congress, in 2023.
“The four yearly event represents an extraordinary opportunity for the avocado industry to come together in New Zealand from around the globe and showcase avocados to the world,” said the industry association.
“The opportunity is ripe for avocados and for the wider horticulture and agriculture sectors to share stories of New Zealand’s sustainable food production.”
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