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Cathay Pacific Resumes Flights To Serve Tasmanian Cherry Exports

December 19, 2021

According to the Australian Trade and Investment Commission (Austrade), Cathay Pacific recently resumed its seasonal freight service for fresh produce from the Australian island state of Tasmania. The airline has scheduled up to four cargo flights per week to bring highly perishable agricultural products, including fruits, vegetables and seafood, from Tasmania to major overseas markets. Cathay Pacific is the first non-charter international carrier to run a non-stop freight service from Hobart, the Tasmanian capital, since 1998 and this is the second year of the service.

Last season, Cathay Pacific employed Boeing 777-300 planes for the service, which lasted from December 2020 to February 2021 with three flights per week. This season, Airbus A350-900 planes will be used to serve Tasmania’s agricultural exports until February of next year, linking Hobart to key airports throughout mainland China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, South Korea, Japan, Vietnam, Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia and the Philippines.

Tony Coad, marketing and sales manager at cherry grower Reid Fruits, said that the airline service is of great value to Tasmania’s cherry industry and the resumption of it was very exciting.

Although Tasmania saw relatively heavy rainfall this spring, this is not expected to affect the production of cherry orchards equipped with canopies. According to Howard Hansen, the owner of Hansen Orchards, there are no indications to suggest an early or late cherry season, so the harvest is expected to start on Jan. 1 and last until mid-February. This season, a new eight-hectare orchard belonging to the company will come into production for the first time. Furthermore, a new packaging line capable of handling up to 15 metric tons of cherries per hour has been put into operation, increasing processing capacity by 50%. Both of these factors make this cherry season look very promising for Hansen Orchards.

Harvesting of Tasmanian cherries typically peaks in the second half of January. Tasmania has the major advantage of being free from Mediterranean fruit flies, which has enabled Tasmanian cherries to enter a number of overseas markets with very strict fruit import standards.

Image: Pixabay

This article was translated from Chinese. Read the original article.


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