PRODUCERS exporting to China are keeping an eye on progress on the coronavirus outbreak, with potential effects yet to become clear.
Orange producers have made a concerted push in the Chinese market in recent years as discerning customers sought higher-quality products.
The NSW Department of Primary Industries recently flagged product exports could be affected by the virus as fewer customs staff attended work, while imports of agricultural chemicals could be delayed in reaching Australia.
Peter Mortimer of Mortimers Wines said his recent shipment to China was held up in port for a couple of days, but the business's bottom line had not been affected.
"It's business as usual - they're a little bit slow getting the wine off the docks in China because there are certain sections shut down, but it's not going to affect our trade," he said.
"Our last delivery was cleared and we don't have another for a couple of months."
Exports make up 30 per cent of Philip Shaw Wines' business with up to two shipments a year, but chief executive officer Damian Shaw said it had likewise been unaffected so far.
Asked whether an impact on overseas demand was anticipated, he said the winemaker was "watching it closely".
"We are a small player - the biggest thing that's impacted us this season is the drought, in that [supply] regard," he said.
Mr Shaw said he had noticed overseas visitors were staying away from Sydney's Chinatown and other areas around Haymarket, but demand had remained strong in the bottle shops and restaurants Philip Shaw supplied to.
"Visitation to the region was down over January due to the bushfires," he said.
"But with people not travelling as far and staying in Australia, we are looking forward to a busy few months."
Caenarvon Cherry Company managing director Fiona Hall said the outbreak occurred after cherry season finished, but the company might need to consider it next season.
"We have to have a strategy meeting to work out what the risks are and how to mitigate those," she said.
Mrs Hall said the company had been looking to extend exports to South Korea.
"We haven't established any relationships there, which we were going to do in the next few months," she said.
"But it's not really affecting us as cherry growers."
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