China’s General Administration of Customs announced on February 26 that it will halt the importation of Taiwan’s pineapples starting on March 1, citing “harmful organisms” detected in the fruit.
Taiwan’s Foreign Minister Joseph Wu responded by starting a “Freedom Pineapple” campaign on Twitter to condemn Beijing’s politically-driven ban on the fruit. “China now bans our pineapples to punish farmers in the south. Remember Australia’s Freedom Wine? I urge like-minded friends around the globe to stand with Taiwan & rally behind the Freedom Pineapple.”
Last year, Australia advocated investigating the source of the COVID-19 disease and angered China. China imposed trade barriers on Australian wine, beef, barley and other products. Democratic countries took action to support Australia and called for drinking Australian wine.
Some Twitter posts used the hashtag that included: “India should show solidarity with Taiwan,” “We would love to buy them in the U.S.,” “Help Taiwan’s farmers counter China’s weaponization of trade,” “Delicious pineapple cakes from Taiwan,” “Taiwan has probably the best pineapple in the world,” and “Democracy pineapples.”
Taiwan’s president also tweeted, “After Australian wine, unfair Chinese trade practices are now targeting Taiwanese pineapple, but that won’t stop us. Whether in a smoothie, a cake, or freshly cut on a plate, our pineapples always hits the spot. Support our farmers & enjoy delicious Taiwanese fruit!”
J. Michael Cole, a researcher at the Canada based Macdonald-Laurier Institute, echoed the campaign on Twitter, “In the latest round of attempts by China to punish Taiwan, Beijing has announced it will cancel all imports of Taiwanese pineapple staring on March 1. I don’t know about you, but I am suddenly craving Taiwanese pineapple.”
Source: Central News Agency, February 27, 2021