Avocado industry hailed as a taste of the future

New Zealand’s avocado industry represents a bright future for the sector, Associate Minister of Agriculture Minister Meka Whaitiri says.

Speaking at the opening of the World Avocado Congress in Auckland, Minister Whaitiri acknowledged the resilience of local growers, despite recent challenging weather events.

She said the avocado industry is a significant contributor not only to New Zealand’s export revenue, regional economy, and employment, but in many other countries globally.

Events like the World Avocado Congress were a great opportunity to celebrate the industry’s successes and collaborate on future opportunities for growth.

“That New Zealand’s avocado industry has been able to host this congress so soon after such a devastating series of weather events is a good illustration of how we approach things here in New Zealand,” said Meka Whaitiri.

The four-yearly congress is the largest global event for the avocado industry, with over 800 delegates from 28 different countries registered to attend.  This makes the 2023 Congress the largest horticultural event New Zealand will have hosted in the last four years.

The Congress brings together growers, scientists, researchers, marketers, retailers, tech innovators, and investors from 32 countries around the world. This includes around 200 avocado delegates from Mexico, 80 from the United States, 130 from Australia and nearly 50 from South Africa.

Congress delegates will spend two days visiting avocado operations in Glenbrook, Tapora, Whangarei and the Bay of Plenty to see innovation in New Zealand avocado industry.

The Government continues to support the avocado sector through the work of the Ministry for Primary Industries, and partnering with the avocado sector on the $11.4 million New Zealand Avocados Go Global programme.

This delivered best practice across the value chain and boosted capability and productivity to ensure consumers have access to New Zealand’s premium avocados.

NZ Avocados Go Global has enabled the avocado industry to pivot their supply into alternative markets such as Asia.  The work undertaken to open new markets and maintain existing Asian markets has helped boost the industry’s resilience. Export volumes to Asia more than doubled from last season to reach $32.9 million in value (around 42 percent of export revenue for 2021/22).

Source:  Associate Minister of Agriculture

Author: Bob Edlin

Editor of AgScience Magazine and Editor of the AgScience Blog