A list of registered Zimbabwean orchards and packing facilities for exporting fresh citrus to China has been made public by the General Administration of Customs of China.
This will significantly improve trade ties between Zimbabwe and China, which has grown to be the country’s main source of foreign direct investment.
The citrus trade protocol was agreed between the governments of Zimbabwe and China last year, and it is intended to make it easier for Zimbabwe to export citrus products to the Asian nation and therefore increase its market share.
This completed the process that was started in 2015 when the nation looked for a market for citrus growers who were small-scale participants in the Shashi irrigation programme.
The Chinese Embassy in Harare published a list of the companies that have been given permission to export fresh citrus fruits on its official Twitter account.
Citrus sinensis (sweet orange), Citrus reticulata (mandarin orange), Citrus paradisi (grapefruit), Citrus limon (lemon) and Citrus aurantifolia (lemon) and Citrus aurantium (sour orange) are among the fresh citrus items to be transported from Zimbabwe to China.
“On June 1, 2023, the General Administration of Customs of China released the list of registered Zimbabwean orchards and packhouses for citrus exporting to China.
“Zimbabwean fresh citrus can now be exported to China, which is the largest market of citrus consumption in the world,” announced the Chinese Embassy.
The approved citrus orchards include Bishopstone Estates, BK Cawood P/L, Nottingham Estate P/L and Luhawde P/L from Beitbridge as well as Barry Warwick PVT Ltd, Broadbridge Investments T/A Mazowe Citrus Estate and Forester Estates from Mazowe.
The other citrus orchards are Harleyton Farm/GMR Eastwood, Roslin Farm/Verdun Services from Beatrice, Home Produce PVT Ltd (Makoni) and Corleinor Pvt Ltd (Zvimba).
Approved citrus packhouses are Bishopstone Estates, BK Cawood P/L, Nottingham Estates P/L all from Matabeleland South, Postwood Investment, Broadbridge Investments t/a Mazoe Citrus Estates (Mashonaland Central) and lastly Mashonaland West’s Corleinor P/L.
The Chinese Embassy said that orchards and packhouses that want to export citrus to China must be registered by Zimbabwe’s Ministry of Lands, Agriculture, Water and Rural Resettlement and approved by both the Ministry and China Customs(GACC).
“The registration record must be forwarded by MLAWCRR to GACC for approval prior to the export season.”
Lands, Agriculture, Fisheries, Water and Rural Development permanent secretary Dr John Basera said that the release of the list of citrus orchards and packhouses by the GACC marks the successful conclusion of preparations to export into the Chinese Market by Zimbabwean growers.
“Now that the compliance issues have been achieved, all registered growers are eligible to export to China subject to pre-shipment inspections by inspectors from the Ministry of Lands, Agriculture, Fisheries, Water and Rural Development,” he said.
“My ministry will provide support to ensure that the long-awaited citrus exports are achieved in line with engagements being done by the Second Republic that have led to the widening of market access to include China.”
Basera also disclosed that his Ministry is now drafting new export agreements for blueberries, avocados, and chillies with China.
Zimbabwe exported 57 283 tonnes of citrus produce in 2017 to Singapore, the United Arab Emirates, Malaysia, Hong Kong, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, and Zambia.