Ready-to-eat beetroot produced by Queensland company One Harvest is now being sold in supermarkets across Japan.
Vacuum-packed Love Beets are pre-cooked, ‘no mess’ beetroots, free from salt, sugar or any other additives.
One Harvest Export Business Manager Sarah Huntley said the company was delighted to secure the distribution deal with Wismettac, and appreciated the support received from TIQ’s Tokyo office.
‘Wismettac has a wide distribution network throughout Japan and we are very excited it has decided to get behind our product and introduce it to Japanese consumers,’ she said.
‘In markets such as Japan it’s vital to have an in-market presence, and TIQ’s Tokyo office has provided us with invaluable on-the-ground support.
‘These exports are a great example of industry and government working in partnership, which is an essential ingredient for export success, particularly in Asia.’
Wismettac General Manager Yoshimitsu Chiba said beetroot was not familiar to Japanese consumers, but shoppers loved its colour and novelty and were impressed by its Australian origins.
‘Love Beets is a new product to the Japanese market and we have introduced it to 8 retail chains and 178 stores,’ Mr Chiba said.
‘We are working very closely with retailers to educate consumers about beetroot, how to use it, store it.
‘We are also doing in-store sampling to provide further encouragement to purchase.
‘We work with suppliers around the world, but Japanese consumers have a very high regard for Australian product and farmers.’
Mr Chiba and Wismettac CEO Hiroshi Tsujikawa met Queensland Minister for Agricultural Industry Development and Fisheries Mark Furner in September during the Minister’s trade mission to Japan, when all three visited a store for a Love Beets’ promotion and tasting.
Mr Furner also visited the Kawasaki branch of the Costco chain, which is also selling Love Beets.
One Harvest is headquartered in the Brisbane suburb of Wacol, and produces a range of processed salads and vegetables at factories in Brisbane, Sydney, Bairnsdale and Perth.
Love Beets are also sold in Queensland through most major food retailers and some smaller speciality food chains.
In 2017–18, Japan imported $16.7 million worth of fruit and vegetables from Queensland.
Agricultural products are identified as one of Queensland’s traditional export strengths in the Queensland Trade and Investment Strategy 2017–2022.