Prince Edward Island businesses travelled to China recently to continue their export growth efforts in the agriculture and seafood markets.
Islanders participated in an international seafood expo and met with Chinese business owners to discuss partnership opportunities.
“China is a place of endless potential for the growth of our exports and it is important we continue to develop our relations with this market,” Agriculture and Fisheries Minister Alan McIsaac said. “I want to recognize the Island businesses that participated in this initiative and thank them for working to grow the economy of Prince Edward Island and showing that a small Island can play a large role on the international marketplace.”
Minister McIsaac met with two major Chinese food retailers during the mission – BHG Market Place and China Resources Vanguard (CRV) Co. BHG is one of the top 15 largest retail enterprises of produce in China and CRV is a major supermarket chains.
Minister McIsaac also met with the Honourable Han Changfu, the current minister of Agriculture of the People’s Republic of China. This meeting reaffirmed our commitment to cooperate with China in agriculture activities and continue to promote trade.
Island businesses participated in a Canadian Fish and Seafood Networking Event where they had the opportunity to meet with Chinese companies and explore new leads and sales opportunities. At the China Fisheries and Seafood Expo, Minister McIsaac worked with Island companies to connect them with potential buyers and establish relationships with major customers. Participating businesses included Raspberry Point Oysters, Atlantic Aqua Farms, Appin Cross Fine Foods Ltd., DI Jenkins and Associates, and Universal Sunshine Enterprise.
Island products were also featured in a food demonstration for perspective buyers showcasing Canadian exports. Both Island beef from Appin Cross Fine Foods and Prince Edward Island ice cream were highlighted.
“Raspberry Point Oysters’ first experience at the China Fisheries and Seafood Expo,as part of a trade mission in China, was a very positive one,” said James Power, manager of Raspberry Point Oysters. “It was beneficial for the company to get our oysters to potential buyers in this part of China.
“The response from these potential customers was great and we are working towards sales to prospective clients – we feel there are great potential sales with companies we met there,” he said.
China is Prince Edward Island’s 10th largest trading partner so far in 2016, and accounts for an overall trade value of more than $15 million each year. Lobster remains the province’s leading export to China; .more than $6 million worth of Island lobster totalling one million pounds was shipped to China last year.