California food exporters see Hong Kong’s importance as Asia’s food and beverage hub strengthen
 
Aug 16, 2018
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Californian food and agriculture exports to Hong Kong and China are valued at over US$3.1 billion annually

Hong Kong’s role as Asia’s food and beverage trading hub is set to strengthen thanks to significant investment in air, road, and rail infrastructure. This is according to the California State Trade and Expansion Promotion Program that assists food and agriculture exporters who have made Hong Kong/China their second largest export market valued at over US$3.1 billion annually.

As a primary export and re-export destination, Hong Kong’s role as a food and beverage distribution centre is crucial for Californian exporters as they seek to grow their businesses across Asia Pacific. Improvements to infrastructure including the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge and Guangzhou-Shenzhen-Hong Kong Express Rail Link, both set to open this year, will provide faster time to market for Californian exporters.

“Seen as a trendsetter for other markets in Asia, Hong Kong has excellent financial, legal and logistics infrastructure and is a major facilitator of trade within the region,” said Jeffrey Williamson, Director, California State Trade Expansion Program (STEP). “Today, Hong Kong is considered a lead market for Californian food exporters who are entering Asia or expanding their business in the region.”

Accounting for almost half of fruit acreage in America, and thanks to the 77,500 farms and ranches, California’s agriculture industry is worth over US$46 billion, and operates within strict food laws. These farms and ranches supply more than 400 animal and plant commodities - milk, almonds, grapes and beef being the top products – and two thirds of the nation’s fruits and nuts, and one third of all vegetables alone.

The Golden State produces over 90 percent of America’s supply of raisins, rice, pomegranates, dried plums, artichokes, figs, and pistachios and wine. Eight out of every ten almonds eaten in the world are grown in California.

The State’s long coastline is also home to a major commercial fishing industry with tuna and swordfish being the two most popular catches, along with Asian favourites such as salmon, abalone, crab, shrimp and squid.

“Consumers today are more than ever conscious and demanding about where their food comes from, and California has a strong reputation worldwide for producing fresh foods under strict and exacting conditions. Exporters are able to access consumers in multiple markets, notably in North and South East Asia thanks to Hong Kong being an advanced logistical hub in the region,” added Williamson.

California will once again host a pavilion at the Hong Kong Food Expo 2018 from now until 18 August 2018. The Californian Pavilion (Booth 5C-A18) will see a host of leading gourmet food producers with dedicated stations showcasing speciality foods and beverages.

On display at the Californian Pavilion will be American Trading International, INC, BMA Foods (edible oils), GEMSA Oils (Di’ Stefano Olive Oils, Farm to Market Oils, VITA Premium Oils), J & J Brothers Distribution (wines and spirits), New Direction Foods (ice cream and ice cream cakes), and NorQuin (a grower and supplier of quinoa and quinoa derived products). The CalAsian Chamber of Commerce, representing over 600,000 Asian Pacific Islander owned businesses in California, will also be present.

About California STEP

The California State Trade Expansion Program (California STEP) project leverages a statewide network of state, federal, private and non-profit trade promotion organizations to facilitate export promotion, activities, serving targeted industries, to drive exports for small businesses.

Managed by the California Department of Food and Agriculture in partnership with the Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development (GOBIz), the network of STEP Partners implement a range of export promotion programs serving multiple sectors, including: Information & Telecommunications Technologies, Green Technologies, Food and Agricultural Products, California Lifestyle Products, Aerospace, Medical and Scientific Instrumentation, Transportation Equipment and Industrial Machinery.

Issued on behalf of California State Trade Expansion Program by Newell Public Relations.

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