Queensland producers will have access to lychee varieties from Taiwan as part of a Memorandum of Understanding agreed to by the Queensland and Taiwanese Governments.
Minister for Agriculture and Fisheries Leanne Donaldson said Agriculture and Fisheries and Trade and Investment Queensland had facilitated this investment which would open the door to joint research projects with Taiwan.
“The benefit for our lychee growers is the expected increase in export market share and access to new varieties and markets in the longer term,” the Minister said.
“The Taiwanese have been attracted to Queensland because it has the opposite season to northern hemisphere production.
“Six specially-developed varieties will be made available to Queensland farmers for testing in their orchards in the north and south of the state.
“If they do well in Queensland conditions, Australian growers and Taiwan could then consider a joint project to export to other Asian countries as well as supplying the Australian domestic market.
“The first step is to import several hundred lychee trees, which will be placed in a secure Australian Government biosecurity facility in Victoria for up to twelve months before being moved to a nursery in Queensland for broader planting on local farms.
“One of the varieties Taiwan will send to us is called ‘Rose Red’, which is a large lychee with a slightly rose fragrance, better shelf life, and is easier to peel.”
The lychee MOU was signed by a delegation of Queensland Government officials in the presence of representatives of the Australian Lychee Growers Association during last week’s mission to Taiwan.