Ginkgo nut growers in New Zealand
Graham and Mavis Dyer, owners of Bay Park Orchard in Ruahihi Rd, are growing Ginkgo nuts, for commercial production. They planted 2000 Ginkgo trees, three metres apart in rows six metres wide, on 2.4 ha five years ago and expect to start producing nuts in two years.
They are the only commercial Ginkgo nut growers in the Southern Hemisphere and have been given a TechNZ grant to discover the best way of storing them and maintaining the quality to fetch high prices in the ready-made Japanese market.
At full production, the Dyers are expecting to supply 25 tonnes of Ginkgo nuts - a kilogram can be worth as much as $100 - to Japan in its off season from June to September.
The Ginkgo nuts, sought after by the top chefs, are used in soups, stews and desserts, particularly congee, and are served at special occasions such as weddings and other celebrations. The Asians believe that the Ginkgo nut makes them live longer.
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