Southern Hemisphere avocado exports to rise 9.7%
Avocado exports from the Southern Hemisphere's major suppliers are set to grow 9.7% to 224,000 metric tons (MT) in the 2011/12 season, despite setbacks in South Africa.
Research agency iQonsulting estimates the biggest rise in imports will come from largest supplier Chile with a 31.4% increase to 116,221 metric tons (MT), while its neighbor Peru should record a 15.2% rise to 65,000MT.
In Africa, major European market suppliers South Africa and Kenya are expected to export a total of 43,112MT, compared to 59,692MT in the 2010/11 season.
IQonsulting has adjusted its Chilean avocado export forecast down from 120,000 metric tons (MT) to 116,221MT, but this still represents a 31.4% rise on last season.
There has been a slow accumulation of dry matter for Chile’s avocado crops this season, with an overall average of between 18% to 21%, falling short of the 24% standard. However, growers in the IV (Coquimbo) and V (Valparaiso) have reached the dry matter percentage benchmark.
"Low temperatures in frosts registered during week 26 (Jul. 1) did not have an effect as signifcant as had been speculated in prior weeks, due to relatively high humidity which helped to mitigate the effect the frosts had on the fruit," the iQonsulting report said.
"The most severe damages registered were in orchards that already presented a type of stress, or in those that weren't significant for production volume."
Chile's Metropolitana region (Santiago) expects the highest increase in exports with a 63% rise to 22,071MT, while the country's major avocado-growing V (Valparaiso) region expects to increase shipments by 29% to 71,813MT.
Read the Chilean Hass Avocado Committee's verdict on production here.
Hass avocado harvests in Peru's northern zone are developing as normal with around 60% of the year's crop already collected, with expectations the season will finish in September.
There have been no reports of conditional problems with the fruit, sizes have been uniform, while the concentration of dry material has been around 24%.
In week 29 (Jul. 22) Peru's exports are expected to reach 48,000MT, representing 75% of the year's expected crop with Europe as the main destination market.
Peru has recently received approval for access to the U.S. without cold treatment quarantine procedures.
Kenya's shipments are expected to rise 14.7% to 13,712MT, while more than half of the year's expors are expected to be completed by the end of week 29 (Jul. 22)
During the same period last year Kenya had shipped 42.9% of its total exports.
South Africa's avocado export volumes are expected to fall by 38.4% this year to 29,400MT, due to alternate bearing and hail storms that affected the country's productive regions in September and November.
The crop has been affected by quality problems, with a lot of fruit going towards avocado oil and guacamole processing.
Until week 28 (Jul. 15) total exports were 12,000MT, representing a 9% year-on-year fall.
Click here to read South African Avocado Growers’ Association CEO Derek Donkin's take on the season and variety trends both at home and in Kenya.
iQonsulting/ edited by www.freshfruitportal.com