Gaining access for dragon fruit’s exports to China may be Cambodia’s next priority

A seller shows his mangoes at a local market. KT/Chor Sokunthea. Sketched by the Pan Pacific Agency.

PHNOM PENH, May 11, 2021, Khmer Times/Asia Fruit. Exporting dragon fruit to China looms as the next goal for Cambodia following its first shipment of mangoes to the new market. Cambodia gained approval to export mangoes to China in April 2020 and has sent the first of what its hopes to be tens of thousands of tonnes of mangoes, Asia Fruit reported.

According to a report from the Khmer Times, the country’s agriculture industry has already begun assessing the next opportunities, and dragon fruit exports to China are top of the list.

Yaing Siang Koma, founder of the Cambodian Centre for Study and Development in Agriculture, has been involved in the development of dragon fruit production in Cambodia, notably a 1,000ha project in Sambor Neak, Preah Vihear province, which aims to supply international markets.

Koma told the Khmer Times that Cambodia could profit significantly from the increased demand for dragon fruit in China. In 2020 dragon fruit was one of the imported fruits that saw the most growth in China.

According to Chinese customs data, dragon fruit was China’s second-largest fruit import by volume in 2020 with a year-on-year increase of 41.9 per cent. This was despite total China’s total fresh fruit imports declining by 8.9 per cent in 2020.

Cambodia has already experienced the potential of the China market with bananas, exports to China increasing 1,276.7 per cent in volume in 2020.

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