The Philippines will send a "trial shipment" of fruit and vegetables to Singapore next week in hopes of cracking the lucrative market and possibly expanding elsewhere, according to an official.
The move comes as the government tries to expand the nation's agricultural exports, which currently sit at about $4 billion, compared with Vietnam's $11 billion and Thailand's $28 billion.
About 20 boxes of carrots, cabbage, bananas, papaya, squash and spices will be shipped next week through Singaporean company Green and Fresh Ltd, said agriculture assistant secretary Salvador Salacup.
"These are just initial trial shipments. They still have to test the market for receptivity by their consumers, to test quality-wise for pest and disease control, if we meet safety and health protocols," he told AFP.
Officials from Green and Fresh visited the Philippines last year to check farms before deciding on the trial shipments, Salacup added.
If successful the trial could lead to large-scale shipments to Singapore which can open the door to other agricultural exports such as chicken and pork, Salacup said.N