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Tonga’s growers’ federation seeks other options for exporting local pawpaw overseas

Radio & TV Tonga, Nuku’alofa, 13/03/2017

The Tonga Growers Federation is seeking alternative ways of processing pawpaw for export apart from exporting fresh fruits.

Speaking to Radio Tonga News, a member of the federation – Solomone Vaikeli says other options include frozen pawpaw because export of fresh pawpaw requires a lot of work to ensure that upon arrival in the overseas markets, the fruit maintains its freshness and  still in good quality.

Such requirement includes inspecting allotment for the pawpaw farming, the process of using the High temperature forced air system HTFA to ensure there are no fruit flies in the pawpaw and others.

Other options they’ve considered is processing other products from pawpaw such as jams, juices or ice blocks for export.

The Growers federation is working closely with experts from NZ to ensure they’ve accomplished the move.

Meanwhile information from the Quarantine department says, frozen pawpaw can only be exported overseas through shipments.

However, a quarantine officer should be present while they are packing the produce to ensure that it is not only safe but is also complies with their procedure.

The quarantine department also state, the only problem of exporting frozen pawpaw overseas is that only Tongans buy it, DESPITE most of the markets need fresh pawpaw.                    

© Radio and Television Tonga News