Taiwan farm product makers hope for export orders boost from 2020 Tokyo Olympics

27, Feb. 2019

COA Deputy Minister Chen Tian-shou (4th from right, first row) poses with executives of companies which will exhibit agricultural products at Foodex Japan.
COA Deputy Minister Chen Tian-shou (4th from right, first row) poses with executives of companies which will exhibit agricultural products at Foodex Japan.

TAIPEI, NNA - Taiwanese firms are seeking to boost farm product exports to Japan as consumption is expected to increase amid a tourism boom for the Tokyo 2020 Summer Olympic Games.

Both fresh produce and processed food from Taiwan will be exhibited at Foodex Japan 2019 at Makuhari Messe near the capital from March 5 to 8. The annual event, the largest of its kind in Asia, is expected to draw 85,000 visitors and exhibitors from 80 countries.

Foodex Japan has drawn 142 Taiwanese companies as exhibitors, 10 percent more than last year’s event. Taiwan is the third largest exhibitor, following China and Spain.

Nine Taiwanese firms have already met the Global Good Agricultural Practices standards necessary to be eligible to compete for orders to supply the 2020 Tokyo Games held from July 24 to August 9.

Early indications of whether the Taiwanese firms will win orders may come in June this year, Vincent Lin, deputy director general for international affairs at Council of Agriculture (COA), a Taiwanese government agency, told NNA Monday.

Taiwan’s farm product exports totaled $5.4 billion in 2018, COA data showed.

“We’d expect 10 percent growth in exporting through various exhibitions abroad in addition to Foodex Japan this year,” COA Deputy Minister Chen Tian-shou told reporters Monday.

Japan was the second largest export market for Taiwanese farm products last year, with sales of $923 million, 6 percent more than in 2017. China was the largest market and the United States was the third biggest.

Beyond maintaining good performance in mature markets like Japan, and exploring new demand in China, a special focus is placed on new southbound markets this year, according to the Taiwan External Trade Development Council, a government-backed trade promoting body.

It is a part of Taiwan’s external economic strategy aimed at developing relations with countries in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations and South Asia, Australia and New Zealand,