Publication Details (including relevant citation information):
Phan-Thien, K-Y, Wei S, Li XW (2006) Marketing Hami melon in Shanghai, China. Acta Horticulturae 699, 357-364.
This research establishes consumer requirements for Hami melon in a major market, examines industry constraints to fulfilling these requirements, and discusses how the supply chain could be improved to better satisfy the market. Findings are based on the results of a consumer survey and sensory evaluation conducted in Shanghai in 2004, and on previous studies of the Hami melon supply chain. The results indicate that consumers demand mature, highly sweet, Hami melon with maximum visual quality and a long storage life. Direct supply to supermarkets and the provision of pre-cut and ‘green’ melons represent growing markets for potential exploitation. The supply of high quality melons of optimal maturity necessitates coordinated post-harvest management, which requires chain members to have a long-term, ‘whole chain’ perspective. This is unlikely in the existing supply chain, which is fragmented, transaction-based and encourages short-term decision-making for immediate benefit. Consolidation at the farmer level through self-managed groups would be an effective basis for the development of a more integrated supply chain, but will require considerable motivation and willpower from within the industry, as well as government assistance, particularly in terms of policy that supports equity and transparency in members interactions and protects industry innovations such as branding.
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