Hundreds of emergency flights will send fresh produce to key export markets in a bid to help farmers and fishers under coronavirus pressure.

The federal government will spend $110 million on flights to China, Japan, Hong Kong, Singapore and the United Arab Emirates.

Where possible, the planes will return loaded with medical supplies and pharmaceuticals Australia needs to fight the disease.

Fisheries fees of $10 million will be waived, with a further $50 million added to a grants program to reimburse exporters for marketing costs.

High-quality exports like lobster and abalone have taken massive hits as the global pandemic shuts down commercial air travel.

About 90 per cent of Australian air freight usually goes out in the bellies of passenger planes.

“Those passenger flights are no longer coming and so we’ve got to look at freight solutions so that we can save jobs in those critical agricultural sectors as well,” Trade Minister Simon Birmingham told the ABC.

Fruit and vegetables, red meat and dairy products are among the other exports expected to benefit from the flights.

Agriculture Minister David Littleproud said it was important for farmers to maintain links to export markets during the crisis.

“It allows us to showcase Australian agriculture is producing not just the best food and fibre in the world, but some of the most reliable,” he told ABC radio.

Mr Littleproud said Australians should not be concerned that food is being sent overseas during the coronavirus outbreak.

“We are a nation of 25 million people. We are producing food for 75 million,” he said.