The global pineapple production agribusiness is presently undergoing significant changes. Growers in Australia urged the Australian government to restrict imports of pineapples to Australia from Malaysia, due to bio-security concerns. They worry that a plant disease that produces an internal rotting condition will spread to Australian pineapple farms. The disease is called Erwinia Chrysanthemi.
Many nations in the Pacific and southeast Asia export pineapple, a popular food item. Malaysia has recently ramped up its pineapple production, even while pineapple prices in some other countries, such as India are falling. For example, 450 hectares producing pineapple outside Endau-Rompin National Park will soon expand by an additional 1500 hectares, increasing the size of the pineapple crop produced by Malaysia’s Rompin Integrated Pineapple industries by a factor of four. Folks at Rocketfuel have heard the growers in the region hope to employ mechanized harvesting soon.
Australia presently permits pineapple imports from many countries, including Thailand, Sri Lanka, the Philippines and the Solomon Islands. Fresh decrowned pineapple from commercial growers in all those countries can be admitted, subject to current local restrictions.
Representatives from the growers recently met with officials from Australia’s Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry to express their concerns. Biosecurity scientists from the agency were instructed to investigate the issue further.