Member for Barker Tony Pasin says Barker’s potato farmers are now enjoying improved access to the Thai market with two key commitments now realised under the Thailand-Australia Free Trade Agreement (TAFTA).

Thailand has now implemented zero tariffs and the removal of tariff rate quotas that limited the volume that could access the lower TAFTA tariff rate for Australian seed and processing potatoes.

“This is an important market access improvement for the Australian potato industry, particularly in South Australia and great news for Barker,” Mr Pasin said.

“In addition to being exempt from tariffs, farmers can now export seed and processing potatoes at any time of the year.

“This is a fantastic outcome for potato producers and exporters in Barker who already have well-established relationships with Thai buyers.”

“Last year, Thailand was Australia’s second largest potato export market at $4.6 million in 2019 and the removal of remaining constraints is only going to help grow our exports.”

Seed potatoes are used by Thai farmers to grow potatoes locally while processing potatoes are used to make products like potato chips.

Processing potatoes produced in all states are permitted to import into Thailand subject to phytosanitary requirements.

Seed potatoes from South Australia, Victoria and Western Australia are currently approved by Thailand’s Department of Agriculture to be exported to Thailand.

In South Australia, more than 11,900 hectares of potatoes are under cultivation and the industry consists of around 100 businesses directly employing more than 2000 people.

“Barker will be a big beneficiary of the removal of tariffs and quotas with 85% of South Australia’s potatoes grown in Barker,” Mr Pasin said.

Media contact: Charlotte Edmunds 8531 2466