This is certainly good news for Argentine fruit farmers. I vividly remember a few years back when the exact opposite was true.
An acquaintance owed an Argentine Pear orchard and let the fruit fall from the trees and rot. Why? Because the price to pick the pears was higher than the price offered to buy the pears. Knowing the price of a single pear in the USA I just couldn’t understand how this could happen but it did and this higher cost to pick than revenue received dynamic was limited to pears.
Pear and apple exports increase 500+ % in January
Argentina: Pear and apple exports increased by more than 500% in January
Regional exports of pears and apples amounted to 4,300 tons during the first month of the year. i.e. 500% more than in January of the previous year.
The aforementioned data takes into account exports through the port of San Antonio and the port of Bahia Blanca in Buenos Aires, which together account for 80% of all exports.
This year-on-year increase is shocking, but there are to two variables which must be taken into account. The first variable is that it is the beginning of the season, so the volumes sold are low and do not set trends. The second variable is that the shipments during 2017 recorded historical lows and, therefore, the sector expected an increase in sales, even more taking into account the greater volume projected on the exportable offer of the present season.
For most of the market operators, the Valley could increase its shipments by around 15% throughout 2018. However, it will depend on how the markets abroad react and on the quality of fruit to be shipped.
According to reports from the Patagonia Norte Port Terminal (TPPN), pear exports in January reached 4,212 tons, registering a 542% year-on-year increase.
According to the report, 60% of the total of these exports was directed towards Russia, a market that receives product of low quality and high risk of collection.
“The United States is shaping up to be the best destination for Argentina’s quality pears,” said one of the regional operators when asked about the issue. He also stressed that the devaluation of the dollar against the euro was important as it would allow the exporters from the Valley to earn about 4 dollars per box in the current season, if the price of the fruit of the southern hemisphere remains the same in Europe. “The problem is not abroad… it’s our quality,” said another source.
According to private statistics prepared by the TPPN, 88 tons of apples were shipped in January. In January last year, no apples were exported through either port. Russia concentrated, in this case, about 80% of the apples shipped during January.
Publication date: 2/8/2018