VG97042 Export – Burdock, Daikon and Shallots

This publication is the Final Report of the project VG 97042 and contains the findings of
research conducted from January 2001 to May 2003.

The aim of the project was to identify
optimal agronomy practices for burdock, daikon and shallots, which were identified as
potential export vegetables for Western Australia.

project aims included determining the economic viability of exporting fresh and/or semiprocessed
burdock, and to identify other potential export vegetables for Western

The following extract describes the potential for new export vegetables for Western Australia, including
burdock, daikon, shallots.

Soon Chye Tan Vynka McVeigh
Harald Hoffmann  

VG97042 New export vegetables: Burdock, Daikon and Shallots
Download 354kb

Findings :

Competition from other countries is a growing concern for the Western Australian export vegetable industry.

Unfortunately, this statement is very true for the potential export vegetable, Burdock (Arctium lappa).

In the time it took for the research to determine optimum agronomic practices to produce high quality fresh burdock in WA for export to Japan, the fresh market has become uneconomic.

Chinese imports into Japan have caused low prices of imported burdock resulting in low returns for fresh export burdock from WA.

Initial studies into semi-processed burdock have also indicated that the Japanese market is not viable.

Daikon (Raphanus sativus) and Shallots (Allium ascalonicum) were also identified as having export potential for Western Australia.

This project has investigated the cultural practices required to successfully grow these vegetables in Western Australia.

Desk-top studies have also been conducted on Japanese taro, Japanese yam, Japanese broad bean and Japanese green soybean with initial field trials on Japanese taro.

Burdock root

Conclusions :

  • A study tour to Japan in December 2001 concluded that WA could not viably export
    fresh burdock to Japan due to burdock imports from China
  • As fresh burdock was considered uneconomic, semi-processed burdock imported to
    Japan was investigated.

    The costs of processing burdock in WA and importing to
    Japan were also considered not viable based on the prices per kilogram received for
    imported processed burdock in Japan.

  • Shallots have showed promising results in agronomic trials and may be a potential
    export crop, particularly to the Indonesian market.


Recommendations :

Discontinue further agronomy trials on burdock.

  • Revise the economic analysis of semi-processed burdock exported to Japan when
    more detailed data are available.

  • Conduct a detailed economic analysis on exporting shallots to a range of potential

  • Continue agronomic trials of Japanese taro in suitable areas.
  • Monitor studies conducted by Central Queensland University and Taro Growers
    Association and remain involved in agronomic trials to determine best practice for
    WA growing conditions.

  • Complete detailed market analyses on other potential export vegetables, Japanese
    , vegetable green soybean and Japanese broad bean.

Acknowledgements :

The financial assistance of Horticulture Australia Ltd. and AusVeg is gratefully acknowledged, without which the completion of this project would not have been possible.

To the technical staff at the Medina Research Station and Manjimup Horticultural Research Institute for maintaining and monitoring the field trials.

To the Japanese seed company, Takii & Co. for providing the seed for the burdock trials.

To Jane Speijers for assisting in the statistical analysis of the data.

Thank you to all the Japanese people we visited during the study tour to Japan and gave us their time and valuable information about burdock and the Japanese market.

Also, thanks to Alex Rahmig for compiling together the economic analysis of semi-processed burdock.

This project was commissioned by Horticulture Australia Limited and funded by the Vegetable R&D levy and the Western Australian State Government..

The Australian Government provides matched funding for all HAL’s R&D activities.

^ Back to top