On-the-Ground Update

Yerba mate production chain generates over one billion dollars a year in South America

Innovation & Technology
Market & Price Trends
Rene Barreto
Published Oct 19, 2020
A truly organic crop native to South of Brazil, Northeast of Argentina and Southeast of Paraguay is widely used as a drinking mate in common social practice among Gauchos and 'vaqueros' in parts of Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay, southern Chile, and eastern Bolivia. It was also introduced in Syria and Lebanon, where lies 2.5% of the global consumption of it. Smaller amounts are also consumed in Saudi Arabia and Israel.

Argentina accounts for 55% of the total production, whilst Brazil and Paraguay account for 38% and 6% respectively. The production chain of yerba mate generates an estimated turnover of USD 1 billion dollars yearly and finally shows potential to grow beyond its traditional clusters. The consumption habit of a caffeine-rich infused drink inherited from the Guarani and Tupi indigenous people is now opening its way into new industrial applications in ready-made drinks, such as mate tea and energy drinks, as well as cosmetics such as shampoos and moisturizers, among other products.
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