A.R. Ferguson
World commercial kiwifruit production now exceeds 2.4 million t a year. China produces about half the total production, about 1.2 million t per year. Commercial production started in China only in 1978 and plantings have now expanded to more than 100,000 ha. Shaanxi Province alone produces at least 600,000 t of kiwifruit each year, almost half of the total for China and more than any other single country in the world. Shaanxi, Sichuan and Hunan Provinces together produce about three quarters of the total Chinese production. The kiwifruit industry in China is different from that of other countries in the very rapid recent increases of both plantings and production, in the diversity of cultivars grown, in production being geared towards local consumption and in the infrastructure required for large-scale exports still developing. Currently, exports of fresh kiwifruit from China are less than 1% of the total Chinese production. The most important cultivar grown is ‘Hayward’ with 33% of total production and supplanting ‘Qinmei’, which is now less popular. The five most widely planted cultivars ‘Hayward’, ‘Qinmei’, ‘Xuxiang’ and ‘Miliang No 1’, all green-fleshed Actinidia deliciosa, and ‘Hongyang’, red-centred A. chinensis, account for nearly two thirds of the total kiwifruit production in China.
In order of production, Italy, New Zealand, Chile and Greece together are responsible for about 80% of the kiwifruit produced outside China. The Chilean production in 2014 was halved because of severe frosts last spring. New Zealand and Chile are dependent on exports. Italy and Greece also export considerable quantities of fruit. With the loss of many yellow-fleshed kiwifruit cultivars because of bacterial canker of kiwifruit caused by virulent biovars of Pseudomonas syringae pv. actinidiae (Psa), ‘Hayward’ fruit account for nearly all the kiwifruit in international trade. Since ‘Hayward’ is not a protected cultivar and is grown throughout the world, marketers see a need to distinguish their ‘Hayward’ kiwifruit from those of their competitors.
‘Hort16A’ from New Zealand was the first yellow-fleshed kiwifruit in production outside China and was the most important yellow-fleshed cultivar in international trade. Since the arrival of Psa in New Zealand, it has largely been replaced by ‘Zesy002’ (Gold3) which is yet to come into mature production. Other new green-fleshed, yellow-fleshed and red-fleshed cultivars are being grown in different countries but they are still minor contributors to international trade.
Susceptibility to Psa must now be considered one of the most important characteristics in the selection of new kiwifruit cultivars.
Ferguson, A.R. (2015). KIWIFRUIT IN THE WORLD - 2014. Acta Hortic. 1096, 33-46
DOI: 10.17660/ActaHortic.2015.1096.1
Actinidia chinensis, Actinidia deliciosa, cultivars, 'Hayward', 'Hongyang', 'Zesy002', 'Qinmei'

Acta Horticulturae