KARACHI: After securing mango exports to the US and Japan, the Australian market has become a possibility as a delegation of the Australian Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry (DAFF) will arrive on May 27 to inspect and determine whether Pakistani mangoes are up to global standards.
The team will spend eight days visiting mango orchards and inspecting the processing and treatment facility and packaging plants in Karachi, Multan and Lahore to evaluate if the methods used are in compliance with international standards.
After receiving approval for exports to the United States and Japan last year, Australia can be the third lucrative destination to be added on the export list in two years.
The Australian team of experts will inspect, step by step, the implementation of internationally accepted good agricultural practices (GAP), transportation of mango from the farm to processing units.
All Pakistan Fruit and Vegetable Importers and Exporters and Merchants Association Co-chairman Waheed Ahmed said that certification by the Australian authorities will help Pakistani horticulture industry get better prices in other markets.
Despite the fact that Australia is potentially a huge market, Ahmed said there are limited chances of exports as there is no direct flight to the country as yet.
He said that Pakistan has currently about two dozen farms registered with Global GAP although the number needs to be increased to enter valuable markets and meet their demands.
Australian experts will visit three packing houses at three selected export companies and a hot water treatment plant during their three-day stay in Karachi. It will visit two farm houses in the next leg of its visit in Multan and then visit the irradiation plant in Lahore.
Published in The Express Tribune, May 25th, 2012.
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