Joyce Chang, The China Post
In an effort to cope with an oversupply of watermelons, farmers in Yunlin County, Taiwan’s major watermelon growing region, broke through traditional sales channels and will begin to export watermelons to Canada.
Farmers in Orhlun township, Yunlin County — the main watermelon growing area in Taiwan — overcame transportation problems by using freezer containers to keep the melons fresh on their journey to Canada. The first stage of the overseas sales will be to export around 24,000 kilograms, pushing the sluggish watermelon trading price at Tzuchang market, the island’s largest watermelon trading market, up above NT$10 from NT$3 to NT$4 per kilogram currently, putting a smile back on the faces of the farmers. Due to the oversupply of watermelons in Orhlun and Hsilo, the island’s major watermelon growing areas with a planting area over 2,000 hectares, the trading price has remained low. To promote sales, the farmers hold discount sales not only at Tzuchang market on holidays but also at supermarkets islandwide. The watermelon season runs from April to July, and the Council of Agriculture estimates that the oversupply problem has yet to reach its peak and is discussing other promotions to stimulate further consumption.