Strong avocado returns driving investment into industry

The New Zealand avocado industry has just posted the draft result for the 2017-18 season of $150m in sales, with $105m from export markets and $45m from the New Zealand market.

This outstanding result has been achieved from 3.8m trays, just 50% of the production volume of the previous year, which achieved $200m across all markets.

Avocado exporters and New Zealand avocado suppliers acknowledge it has been a phenomenal season for avocado demand, with record returns to growers.

New Zealand Avocado Growers Association Chair Tony Ponder says “The Government’s five year Primary Growth Partnership investment and the commitment of research funding through Plant and Food Research and MBIE has strongly supported growth in returns to avocado growers.”

Orchard gate returns were as high as $40 per tray, a huge improvement from the $10-$12 per tray prior to this investment in 2012.

NZ Avocado CEO Jen Scoular comments “Demand continues to grow in all markets, and the focus is now on increasing productivity of existing orchards and supporting new orchard development.”

 Growth in returns driving investment

“Over 1,000 hectares of dairy and dry stock farms in Northland have been converted to avocado orchards over the past three years, and some of these orchards are expecting their first crops in the coming season” says Scoular.

In the Bay of Plenty, orchardists are rejuvenating orchards and investing in implementing best practice orchard management to reap the high values being returned for premium quality avocados.

These new avocado plantings and improving production will enable further growth towards the industry goal of $280m in total sales value by 2023. This will also help to bridge the current gap between avocado supply and demand in New Zealand and globally, with a growing supply of New Zealand fruit for avocado lovers to enjoy.

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