Jakarta (ANTARA News) - Indonesian fresh pineapples can now be consumed by Italian consumers after a container holding 18 tons of the commodity arrived in Italys city port of Venezia over the weekend.

The 18 tons of fresh pineapples were exported in a maiden shipment by PT Great Giant Food in cooperation with Italian importer SAMA SpA.

SAMA is planning to import up to 20 containers of the commodity until the end of the year, Counselor Charles F. Hutapea of the Indonesian Embassy in Rome, told ANTARA in Jakarta on Saturday.

Previously, the Italian consumers could only enjoy Indonesian pineapples in the form of canned product.

The unloading of the maiden export of fresh pineapple was witnessed by Indonesian Ambassador to Italy Esti Andayani together with general manager of SAMA, Giorgio Masiero.

Ambassador Andayani expressed happiness over the fact that Italian consumers are increasingly fond of Indonesian fresh pineapples which could compete with fruit from other countries.

"So far, many kinds of Indonesian fruits are imported by countries in Europe and now Indonesian pineapples could also penetrate the Italian market," she said.

The Italian company previously imported pineapples from Caribbean and African countries with a length of delivery time of about three weeks.

The length of time for the importation of pineapples from Indonesia is about four weeks.

However, the longer period does not affect the quality of and shape of Indonesian pineapples. According to the agriculture attache, Yusral Tahir, in Rome, pineapple is one of the Indonesian mainstay types of fruit.

Pineapple production is ranked third in the volume of Indonesias fruit outputs after bananas and mango. Almost all regions in Indonesia produce pineapples.

Pineapple production centers in Indonesia included the provinces of Lampung, West Java, North Sumatra, East Java and Jambi.

Indonesias pineapples production reaches 1.84 million tons with productivity of 117.5 tons per hectare.(*)

Editor: Heru Purwanto
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