09:29 | 01/09/2017 Trade
Australia officially allowed the importation of fresh dragon fruit from Vietnam, following the importation of fresh lychee and mango, the Vietnam's Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT) announced on August 28.
After gaining permission, Vietnam has become the first and only country allowed to export dragon fruit to Australia.
Dragon fruit is a key export fruit of Vietnam with an export revenue of over US$895.7 million in 2016, accounting for over 50% of the total fruit exports and 36% of the total fruit and vegetable exports.
Vietnam and Australia are also working to accelerate a review of the biosecurity import requirements for other fruits from Vietnam.
MoIT said that Vietnamese exporters have to meet a series of strict conditions before exporting fresh dragon fruit to Australia.
Prior to the importation of dragon fruit to Australia, Vietnamese exporters must have a valid import permit issued by the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources.
In addition, fresh dragon fruit must be inspected or tested by the National Plant Protection Organisation (NPPO) and certified to be free from biosecurity (quarantine) pests and produced and exported from Vietnam in accordance with the relevant conditions and work plan.
In particularly, fresh dragon fruit must undergo a mandatory pre-shipment, vapour heat treatment for 40 minutes at a pulp temperature of 46.5 °C or greater, with relative humidity 90% or above at a facility approved by the relevant authority, the Vietnamese Plant Protection Department (PPD).
The Department of Agriculture and Water Resources may review the import policy any time after trade begins or whenever the pest and phytosanitary status in Vietnam has changed.