As Japan ramps-up its export drive, APL steps in to support Japanese growers and exporters in the exploration of overseas markets for their fresh produce. Through its range of SMART reefer solutions and well-diversified global network, APL is committed to offering an optimal and cost-effective transportation that not only preserves the quality of delicate produce but also enables market accessibility.

“Fresh produce grown in Japan is synonymous with fine quality, exquisite taste and excellent presentation. As more Japanese growers take their agricultural products beyond the domestic market, APL looks to work with them in bringing the ‘finest harvest of Japan’ to the world. Through our atmospheric regulating technology, SMARTcare+, APL offers the solution for quality preservation and presentation of fresh produce cargo over time and distance,” said Mr. Fujita Yasuhiro, Head of Commercial, APL Japan.

APL supports Japanese agricultural exporters through containerised reefer solutions

Currently, Japan’s fresh food export markets are mainly concentrated in Asia. Connecting Japan with the key markets of Asia, APL offers the services of Japan Thailand Vietnam (JTV); Japan Thailand 2 (JT2), Japan Thailand 3 (JT3) and Setonai Kai Kyushu Express (SKX). These services cover markets such as South China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Korea and Southeast Asian markets including Thailand and Vietnam amongst others.

While its network services enable market access regionally, APL’s cutting-edge controlled atmosphere technology, SMARTcare+ ensures the quality of fruit and vegetable shipments it ships from Japan. By manipulating ripening rates through nitrogen flushing at the start of the process, APL’s SMARTcare+ can triple the post-harvest life of some perishables compared to conventional methods.

APL customises the application of its reefer solutions based on the requirements of shippers, import protocols and the unique characteristics of the fresh produce cargo that it is shipping. Through trials and active collaboration with shippers, APL identifies the optimal solution to be deployed.

In March this year, APL successfully applied SMARTcare+ and shipped Japanese premium strawberries, as well as Japanese leafy vegetables from Hakata to Hong Kong. The shipment was made by Fukuoka-based, Fuyo Trading, an exporter of fresh vegetables, fruits and food supplies to Asian countries.

Pleased with APL’s delivery, Mr. Keiji Tanaka, President of Fuyo Trading said, “We have high exacting standards for all our fresh produce which are meticulously cultivated to satisfy palates for the finest quality and taste. We are delighted that our fresh strawberries and leafy vegetables reached Hong Kong in pristine conditions so that consumers there can enjoy only the best produce from us.”

“The export drive for Japanese agricultural products is set to escalate the globalisation of Japanese food culture. With the application of APL’s controlled atmosphere reefer technology, the transportation of our freshest produce to different parts of the world is now possible with sea freight instead of expensive air freight. This innovative solution will help us expand our global footprint significantly as we take our premium products to the stores across Asia as well as the Americas and Europe,” added Mr. Tanaka.

APL is one of the most active ocean carriers in Japan to conduct trials with producers of premium fresh fruits and vegetables.

“The global fresh fruit market is growing. We see opportunities in testing our technology on different fruits and vegetables, as well as conducting trials with Japanese growers and exporters who are looking to expand their international reach,” elaborated Mr. Fujita.

Building on its containerised reefer capabilities, APL has steadily increased its forty-foot reefer containers over the past three years. APL has also strengthened technical support in Japan to lend expertise in facilitating the exploration of export markets by Japanese agricultural producers. Growers who need innovative transportation solutions in tapping the overseas markets may email to APL Inbound and Reefer team at or call 03-5564-7832.

Source: APL