THE PHILIPPINES will start shipping durian to China next month, according to Malacañang. 

An initial volume of 7,500 metric tons of durian is ready to be sent to China in March, the Presidential Communications Office (PCO) said in a statement, citing the Department of Agriculture – Bureau of Plant Industry. 

The initial shipments will be sourced from 59 farmers or producers, covering some 400 hectares of land, the Palace said. 

President Ferdinand R. Marcos, Jr.s visit to Beijing in January opened the door for more Philippine fruit exports to Beijing,the PCO claimed. 

During the state visit, Manila and Beijing agreed on a list of phytosanitary requirements for the export of fresh durians from the Philippines to China. 

The $2.09 billion in purchase intentions for Philippine fruit exports secured by the Marcos administration also covers coconut and bananas, among others,the Palace said.  

At least four companies had expressed their intention to purchase more Philippine tropical fruit products, especially durian,it said, citing Mr. Marcos.   

Cavendish bananas and other fresh fruits have boosted the Philippinesagricultural exports to China.  

The Davao region in southern Philippines produces 78% of the Philippinestotal durian harvest, based on government data.  

In 2021, Chinas total durian imports from Thailand amounted to $4 billion, more than triple the total Philippine agricultural exports to China in the same period,the PCO said. Kyle Aristophere T. Atienza