Weekly Product Updates

W7 Blueberry Update: Peru's Blueberry Industry Adapts to Climate Change with New Varieties Despite 27% Drop in Shipments, Chilean Blueberry Exports Expected to Decrease by 8.5% Due to Weather Challenges, and Ecuador Signs Zero-Tariff Trade Deal with China for Blueberries Exports

Fresh Blueberry
Published Feb 22, 2024
In W7 in the blueberry landscape, Peru's blueberry industry aims for record market exhibitions in 2024 despite low production in 2023 due to El Niño. The industry is shifting towards zero chill varieties and investing in agronomic management to improve fruit quality. Peru introduced new blueberry varieties to adapt to climate change, but shipments have dropped by 27% YoY. Ecuador's blueberry industry benefits from a zero-tariff trade agreement with China. Lastly, Chilean blueberry exports are expected to drop by 8.5% YoY due to weather challenges, with the United States remaining the most significant market.

Peru's Blueberry Industry Aims for Record Market Exhibitions Despite Production Challenges During 2023

Peru is expected to achieve record blueberry market exhibitions in 2024 after experiencing low production in 2023 due to El Niño. The chief executive officer of Agrícola Santa Azul emphasizes the need to avoid market saturation by accurately projecting production and timing promotions. They also underscore the importance of exploring new markets and maintaining high-quality blueberries to ensure a positive consumer experience. In response to the challenges, there are plans to shift towards zero chill varieties and invest in agronomic management to increase production and improve fruit quality. These efforts aim to benefit Valle Supe and Pativilca, Lima region's local economy, and communities through social projects and sustainable practices.

Peru Innovates with New Blueberry Varieties Adapt to Climate Change

A leading blueberry exporter in Peru introduces new varieties, Abril Blue+ and Alessia Blue+, aimed at robustness, resistance, and high productivity with exceptional flavor. These varieties are designed to withstand challenges like the El Niño phenomenon and tropical climates, offering benefits such as extended post-harvest life, large size, sweet taste, and over 4 kilograms (kg) per plant productivity. Despite innovations, blueberry shipments from Peru have dropped by 27% year-over-year (YoY) in the 2023/24 campaign, with major destinations including the United States (US), the Netherlands, and China.

Ecuador's Blueberry Industry to Benefit from Zero-Tariff Trade Agreement with China

Ecuador is set to enter a trade agreement with China on May-24, allowing blueberries to enter with zero tariffs. This is a significant opportunity for Ecuador, particularly for blueberries grown at 52-week altitudes. Companies like Monte Blue support the deal, which is expected to boost the country's blueberry industry and create more jobs. However, genetics is challenging for EcuaBlue, as they need to find varieties that adapt to the country's reality and export aggressively. The agreement will also increase Ecuador's cultivated hectares (ha), which currently stands at 300 ha.

Chilean Blueberry Exports Forecasted to Drop by 8.5% YoY Due to Weather Challenges

Due to adverse weather conditions, the Chilean Blueberry Fruit Committee has adjusted its export forecast for the current season to 80 thousand tons, an 8.5% YoY decline. However, this revised estimate exceeds the previous projection of 73.5 thousand tons. By W3 of the 2023/24 financial year, exports have reached 61.6 thousand tons, marking a 15.6% YoY decrease. The US remains the largest market, followed by Europe, Canada, Asia, Latin America, and the Middle East.

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