Pear orchards, packhouses and cold storage facilities in South Africa can now export fresh pears to China without worry. This comes on the back of a signed protocol of phytosanitary requirements for the export of fresh pears from Mzansi to China.
The department of agriculture, land reform and rural development signed a protocol for phytosanitary requirements with the General Administration of Customs of the People’s Republic of China. The protocol gives guidance on procedures and processes to be followed for the exportation of the commodity.
According to Reggie Ngcobo, spokesperson for the department, this is a breakthrough for the pear industry as it creates access to new markets and aids job creations efforts.
“There is a need to open more markets for SA commodities because it will benefit the economy of the country by earning foreign exchange and creating more job opportunities,” Ngcobo said.
Getting here, however, has not been easy.
The initial request for market access of pears started simultaneously with that of apples in 2008. However, the pest risk analyses for these products were separated and Chinese authorities started with apples first.
The pest risk analysis on pears started in 2015 after conclusion of the apple protocol in 2014. Since then, there have been bilateral exchanges of technical information between the department and their Chinese counterparts on the matter. The draft protocol was finalised in 2020 and in late in 2021 the final protocol was signed by ministers of the two countries.
According to Ngcobo, all fresh pear fruit to be exported from Mzansi to China will have to meet all agreed and applicable phytosanitary requirements, as well as all food safety rules, and health standards as defined by the Chinese authorities.
The fruit must also be free of the quarantine pests of concern to China as listed in the protocol.
Pear orchards, packhouses and cold storage facilities wishing to export their fruit to China must be registered with the department and approved by both the South African and Chinese authorities.
“The department in cooperation with various commodity industries, will continue to strive for opening new market opportunities to strengthen the country’s agricultural sector and for South African commodities to compete with that of other countries in international markets,” Ngcobo stated.
For further information on successful exportation of pears, pear orchards, packhouses and cold storage facilities, visit the department’s website by clicking here.
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