Fri, Jan 24, 2020 - Page 6 News List

First shipment of Taiwan guavas arrives in the US

Staff writer, with CNA, LOS ANGELES

The first shipment of Taiwanese guavas to the US, sold at US$4.99 per pound, are displayed for sale at a supermarket in Los Angeles yesterday.

Photo: CNA

The first shipment of Taiwanese guavas to the US has arrived after more than 20 days at sea, an event that was celebrated on Wednesday by Taiwan’s representative office in Los Angeles.

The guavas were shipped from Tainan on Dec. 27 last year, following the signing of an export agreement by the two countries in October. With the shipment of the 13 metric tonnes of guavas to Los Angeles, Taiwan became only the second country in the world to supply the fruit to the US, after Mexico.

The arrival of the shipment was marked with a ceremony organized by the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in Los Angeles.

At the ceremony, US Representative Judy Chu (趙美心) said the US’ importation of guavas from Taiwan was a “great step forward” for trade relations between the two sides.

“The value of our partnership with Taiwan cannot be understated,” Chu said, adding that Taiwan is the US’ 11th-largest trade partner, while the US is Taiwan’s largest foreign investor.

She said the “fabulous” guavas were one of the most memorable experiences she had during a summer spent in Taiwan when she was a college student.

Also speaking at the event, Andrew Edlefsen, an officer at the US’ Foreign Commercial Service, said bilateral trade between the US and Taiwan totaled US$95 billion in 2018 and will continue to grow.

“I am very happy to see this trade relationship with Taiwan move forward and to see what the future brings,” he said.

Edlefsen also said guavas were his favorite fruit when he lived in Taiwan for five years.

Franz Gehrig, an official with the Consulate General of Switzerland in Los Angeles, said he was impressed when he learned that Taiwan was not just an exporter of high-tech products, but also had a vibrant agricultural sector.

“We hope that in the future, there will also be guavas going to Switzerland from Taiwan,” Gehrig said.

In addition to guavas, Taiwan also exports lychees, carambolas, longans and mangoes to the US, according to Lin Li-fang (林麗芳), head of the agricultural division at Taipei’s representative office in Washington.

The first shipment of guavas, which had to be refrigerated during the trip to avoid fruit fly infestation, will be distributed to supermarkets on the US west coast, Lin said.

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