Australia and Japan partner up to grow fruit
Australia and Japan have signed an agreement to work together to ensure year-round supply of fruit. At a summit in November 2018, the Australian and Japanese prime ministers agreed to devise a cooperative fruit supply programme, to take advantage of the two countries’ complementarily opposing seasons. Australian producers in the north-eastern town of Ayr will grow a local variety of melons using Japanese growing techniques to reproduce the quality and flavour that Japanese consumers prefer. The project will include a contribution from each country of farmland and technical personnel. Farmers will be able to monitor production via video link and offer instructions to staff onsite. Other products to be grown in the Ayr region include persimmon and strawberries, which will be exported to Asian markets. The aim is to target the gifting fruit culture that is growing among Asia’s expanding middle class. Australia chose Ayr as its production region in a bid to drive economic development in the area.