The first load of Mexican avocados shipped by Mission Produce Inc. to a Chinese distributor has arrived in China.
Shanghai, China-based distributor Lantao will distribute avocados shipped by Oxnard, Calif.-based Mission Produce in several Chinese cities, according to a news release.
Lantao has marketing and distribution facilities in six markets in China: Shanghai, Beijing, Guangzhou, Shenyang, Zhengzhou and Harbin.
“We are very excited about the potential for avocados in China,” Ron Araiza, Mission’s director of sales, said in the release. “Our strategic alliance with Lantao gives us a strong partner in the market who understands avocados and our business model. We believe this market is staged for growth, and we’re excited to be leading the way in this expansion.”
Growth of the Mission avocado program will be slow but steady in China’s “second-tier” cities, John Wang, Lantao’s chief executive officer, said in the release.
“The new marketing approach through the inner cities will increase consumer recognition of avocados and lead to more Chinese people trying the fruit for the first time,” Wang said. “Our goal is to slowly increase consumption through education and trials until there is greater acceptance with the Chinese consumer. As the leader in avocado marketing, Mission is the ideal partner to work with to achieve this goal together.”
Araiza and Thomas Padilla, Mission’s export sales representative, plan to travel to China in December to monitor arrivals and gather additional information on the region’s market potential for avocados.
“We believe that along with Lantao, we can expand distribution and spark additional avocado consumption in China,” Padilla said in the release.