2016 NSW DPI China citrus study tour: report and videos

Steven Falivene and Andrew Creek (NSW DPI citrus development officers)  visited China in December 2016 to study production techniques, fruit quality and develop linkages. They visited during the Chinese citrus harvest season to understand the fruit quality characteristics that affect consumer preferences for navel oranges and mandarins. They also visited two major citrus research station to establish linkages and exchange production technique information.

Key findings of the tour are:

  • Chinese preferred fruit with low fruit acidity (about 0.6%); fruit acidity above 0.8% was considered as lesser quality "sour" fruit.
  • The Brix:acid ratio was less relevant and thresholds were more important. Minimum acceptable individual fruit Brix levels was 10.5°, preferably around 12° and highly preferable around 14°.
  • There are two major citrus research station conducting hi-tech laboratory research and in-field applied research. Considerable resources have been allocated to researching control measures for Huanglongbing. Applied research is focused on producing better quality fruit (external blemish and taste) with new varieties, pruning and nutrition management.
  • Soft skinned Japanese "satsuma" type mandarins were selling at high prices similar to good quality navels. Afourer mandarins were grown in China and also selling at a high price, however the acidity levels of the fruit were no greater than 0.8%.

Report download

2016 NSW DPI China citrus study tour
PDF, 1.0 MB


Part 1 - Production (8 min): Overviews the productions areas visited, growing on hill sides, harvest, managing Huanglongbing and nutrition.

Part 2 - Consumer (3 min): Overviews consumer housing, income and internet shopping.

Part 3 - Fruit quality & sales (9 min): Overviews Chinese fruit quality preferences (sugar, acid & shape), supermarket displays and pricing, mandarin sales, Afourer growing and a packinghouse.

Part 4: Research (4 min 30 sec) : Overview two major citrus research stations in China