U.S. blueberries, avocados gain access to China

U.S. blueberries, avocados gain access to China

U.S. blueberries grown in 11 states and California avocados now have access to the Chinese market as a result of the U.S.-China Phase One Economic and Trade Agreement.

The U.S Department of Agriculture reported that both counties have signed protocols to allow the U.S. to export blueberries and California hass avocados into China. Other commodities approved for export include barley for processing, almond meal pellets and alfalfa hay pellets and cubes, according to a news release.

New access

U.S. blueberry exports to China could total $62 million annually, according to the release.

USDA officials and Chinese plant health officials signed a work plan in May outlining the pest screening measures that blueberry producers must comply with to ship to China.
Fresh blueberries from Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, New Jersey and North Carolina may be exported to China after treatment, according to the release. Blueberries from California, Washington and Oregon can export to China if growers use a systems approach to control pests.

For California hass avocado producers, the USDA said access to the Chinese market will be worth an estimated $10 million per year.

Chinese and U.S. officials signed a work plan in April describing the measures California producers and shippers must comply with before they ship fruit to China. The release said China’s agriculture agency has published the import requirements and also posted an approved list of California shippers to their website. Those shippers can begin to export now, the USDA said.

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