Chile deal to benefit almond growers

Almond growers get better export access to Chile

Horticulture
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A deal with Chile should help absorb record Aussie almond crops.

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CHILEANS will be chowing down on more Australian almonds following new market access arrangements.

The news could be something of a relief for growers to, as the industry looks at an increased harvest this year. 

This year's almond crop is expected to be 16 per cent above last year's at a record 93,000 tonnes.

Minister for agriculture, David Littleproud the almond crop is expected to increase over the next five years

He said access to Chile was great news for the $440 million almond export industry and the farmers that underpin it.

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"Gaining market access for Australian produce helps our farmers sell more and employ more regional people," Mr Littleproud said.

."The majority of these almonds have been grown for export, so opening new markets is vital for the success of the industry.

"Now that almond growers can export their high-quality produce to Chile they have access to a market that provides significant potential."

According to the latest season update from the Almond Board of Australia, dry conditions have led to outstanding quality in terms of flavour and colour with size grading similar to last year.

"Experienced growers believe the product quality is the best since the period 2008 to 2010 when the drought was impacting to produce fantastic almond kernels," the update said. 

"The hot and dry conditions currently being experienced in the production regions are ideal for almond harvesting."

Mr Littleproud said improving market access was an important part of increasing farm gate returns and ensuring growers get premium price for their premium produce.

Each year Australia exports around $4 million worth of agricultural produce to Chile.

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