More ungloomy export news

NZ Herald have another instalment in their Gloombuster series – Fruit exports surge.

Demand for premium kiwifruit, apples and avocados helps counter weakness in dairy and forest products.

Data out from Statistics NZ showed the value of fruit exports reached an all time high of $2 billion in the year to June, up almost 20 per cent from a year earlier. Wine was another strong performer, up 7.3 per cent to $1.4 billion in the June year.

The performance of fruit and wine wasn’t enough to offset downturns in other parts of the primary sector – dairy exports were down by 24 per cent to $12 billion and log exports were down 11.3 per cent at $3.56 billion – but the data showed the downturn was not universal.

Both higher prices and a greater quantity of fruit exports – up 9 per cent – contributed to the overall rise, Statistics NZ said.

Kiwifruit and apples led the monthly increases, with exports in May 2015 being the highest value recorded for both kiwifruit ($280 million) and apples ($157 million).

Statistics NZ said kiwifruit was responsible for 59 per cent of fruit exports, followed by apples (28 per cent), and avocados (5.7 per cent).

Agriculture, horticulture and viticulture markets all wax and wane.

Agricultural analysts are bullish about kiwifruit as the sector continues to recover from the devastation caused by the Psa virus since its outbreak in 2010.

ANZ, in an analysis of the sector, said New Zealand kiwifruit sector typified many aspects of true “value-add” leading the way in producing and selling a premium offering.

While dairy trade is significant there is far more to the New Zealand economy than milk.

The apple sector is going from strength to strength with new plantings, by area, increasing by 5 per cent a year. NZX-listed Scales Corp – the country’s largest grower, packer and marketer of apples – said its export grade apple volumes were about 13 per cent ahead of prospectus forecasts.

The higher percentage of both premium apples and percentage of sales to Asia and “near” markets is expected to result in a higher average price per carton than prospectus forecast, said managing director Andy Borland.

Both higher volumes and higher prices.

The Opposition in particular and the media generally put a lot of focus om narrow negatives. It’s good the see the Herald lookig at the wider export economy.

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