Feasibility Study on Developing Exports of Selected Products from Solomon Islands to Australia
Australia’s east coast is a large, affluent consumer market, where many commodity imports are cheaper than domestic products. However, high regulatory requirements make it a difficult market to access. This 2012 feasibility study assessed the export potential of 11 horticultural commodities from the Solomon Islands (SI) to Australia:- banana, cassava, coconut, pineapple, taro, coffee, honey, canarium vanilla, chilli and eggplant. The study found that only coconuts and chillies would be viable for export, as others would be non-viable due to pest and disease management issues, strong competition in Australia, limited infrastructure and other supply side constraints. Coconuts are already established for export and are a high volume, low risk commodity. The report identified how volumes could be increased and efficiency improved through better transport and storage logistics. It also recommended diversification into fresh drinking nuts. Air freight of chillies during the Brisbane winter months, when there is a seasonal price premium, was identified as an opportunity. However, there is currently no market access protocol for SI chillies into Australia and significant investment would be required to establish the chilli value chain.
Key words: value chain linkages, value chain analysis, marketing pathways, chilli, coconut, market access pathway.