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Pending New Market Access Discussion Held In US

A market scoping mission to the US has seen discussions on the pending new market access requests for Fijian papaya and breadfruit. These are currently being assessed by the US
30 Sep 2015 08:44
Pending New Market Access Discussion Held In US
The Fijian Agriculture delegation on a market scoping mission in the USA. Photo: MINISTRY OF AGRICULTURE

A market scoping mission to the US has seen discussions on the pending new market access requests for Fijian papaya and breadfruit.
These are currently being assessed by the US Department of Agriculture and the Animal Plant Health Inspection Services (USDA-APHIS).
Acting Permanent Secretary for Agriculture, Uraia Waibuta, is currently leading an eight member delegation for the mission.
The delegation visited the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Animal Plant Health Inspection Services (APHIS) in Los Angeles the past week.
Mr Waibuta said Karen Ackerman, the Plant Protection Quarantine Trade Director for Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific confirmed this request was now in their work plan and assessment of papaya was complete.
“Work is now underway for the assessment of breadfruit. Formal communication channels between USDA-APHIS and Biosecurity Authority of Fiji were also reconfirmed,” he said.

Issues identifies
Later in the week, the delegation visited the United States Customs & Border Protection (CBP), Long Beach Cargo Examination Station.
The meeting identified the issues that exporters and importers needed to be fully compliant with Food Drug Administration (FDA) regulations.
The delegation was happy to get an opportunity to meet up with Agriculture Specialist, Beison Ramirez; Juan B Ugalde and Shawn T Hopkins and tour an inspection facility.
Importers of Fijian products were visited and these included Montalvan’s Sales Inc, Whole Foods Markets, Canton Foods, and leading distributor Greenfield Imports.

Import concerns
A common message from retailers and importers was that frozen taro and cassava were very popular products.
They said demand for fresh Dalo is very high but the cost and length of freight remains a limitation to the growth of the market.
Transport from Fiji to US is expensive compared to importing out of the South American countries.
The cost of air freight is too high and the sole available shipping line takes up to three weeks.
The delegation also visited the A&S Distributor warehouse based in Salida Sacramento.
The delegation is expected to visit other retail outlets and companies this week.



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