Apple growers have good reason to be optimistic, with New Zealand named the world’s most competitive apple performer in the World Apple Report for the third consecutive year.
The good news comes as hundreds of apple growers and industry players descend on Napier for Pipfruit New Zealand’s annual two-day conference. (August 2nd)
Pipfruit New Zealand Chief Executive Alan Pollard says the apple industry continues to grow and is a significant contributor to the Hawkes Bay and New Zealand economies with a goal to achieve $1bn in export returns by 2022.
“Although the outlook is bright we are focusing our conference this year on challenging and disrupting industry thinking about what the future may hold,” said Mr. Pollard.
“We must not get complacent. We need to continually keep improving and stay ahead of our competitors as the NZ apple industry is transforming into a billion-dollar export business.”
The World Apple Report, recently released, ranks New Zealand first over 33 major apple producing countries ahead of Chile and the US.
Mr Pollard said it is a great achievement to have a competitive edge over the rest of the world and to keep holding that position.
“The apple industry has doubled exports in the last four years so our provinces are prospering from this success. We are growing hundreds of full time jobs across the sector in all areas including production, post-harvest, logistics, marketing and exports.
“We expect to see over one million apple trees planted in New Zealand this year and nurseries have three-year back orders as growers work to meet a growing international demand for New Zealand apples.”
The Pipfruit New Zealand Conference starts on Wednesday 2nd August and will run for two days with some well-known names taking centre stage.
Sir Ray Avery will speak about disruptive thinking, Dr Andre de Barros Teixeira will discuss innovation, technology, R&D and marketing and Dame Diane Robertson will address the impact of big data on consumers and markets.
| A PipfruitNZ release || August 1, 2017 |||