A recent agricultural commodity report shows that although the Australian cherry industry is relatively small, it has grown strongly, and the export outlook for Tasmanian cherries is promising.
The quarterly Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Sciences report shows the average export price of Tasmanian cherries was about $17.34/kg in 2014-2015, compared with $11.83/kg for cherries from other states.
The figures for the current financial year are similar.
Cherry Growers Australia chief executive Simon Boughey said Tasmania had fruit-fly-free status, unlike the rest of Australia, which helped with access to China.
“Tasmanian exporters are exporting about as much as they can,” Mr Boughey said.
In 2015-2016 Tasmania exported 2872 tonnes — almost half the nation’s total — 55 per cent of it going to Hong Kong and China.
Trade to Taiwan more than doubled last year’s result and South Korea lifted 6 per cent on the back of a large increase the previous year.
Tasmania’s cherry exports in 2015-2016 were worth more than $50 million of the $76 million national total.
Mr Boughey said Tasmania’s big, juicy fruit was aimed at the premium market.