SEOUL, July 17 (Xinhua) -- South Korea's exports of agricultural products and food hit a record high in the first half of this year due to strong demand from China and Southeast Asian nations, a government report showed Tuesday.
Outbound shipments of food and agricultural products reached 3.55 billion U.S. dollars in the January-June period, up 7.9 percent from the same period of last year, according to the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs.
It was the biggest first-half figure, surpassing the 6.6-percent growth in overall exports of the country.
Export for fresh agricultural products jumped 27.5 percent over the year to 670 million U.S. dollars in the first half due to strong demand for ginseng, fruits and vegetables.
Processed food export gained 4.6 percent to 2.95 billion U.S. dollars on double-digit gains in instant noodles, beverages and powdered milk.
By region, export to China, South Korea's biggest trading partner, advanced 13.4 percent to 492 million dollars, with those to Japan and the United States keeping an upward trend.
Shipment to Southeast Asian countries picked up 11.2 percent to 667 million dollars on demand for pears, grapes and strawberries.