Honduras expects melon export growth

Honduras expects melon export growth

Honduran melon exporters are forecasting shipment growth to Europe and the U.S. after successful negotiations at the International Melon and Watermelon Congress and Exhibition XIX, website Laprensa.hn reported.

The event was held in the city of San Pedro Sula last week, addressing the key issues and opportunities facing an industry that exported 10,749 containers of the fruit last year.

Honduran Agroexporters Federation president Medardo Galindo said the impacts of the event's business rounds would likely be visible in the short term.

"We believe we reached around 50 rounds of negotiations, but that could increase as participants are asking for four or five meetings, so the goal could be met easily," he was quoted as saying.

"We believe the effects will be seen for this season with people looking for the product and selling it, and the results will be in the short term. We believe that the increase to the European market will be from 5% to 10%, but to the American (market) we should be conservative, so we estimate it could grow up to 5%."

Excosur representative Marlon Fajardo told the website his company currently exports three million cartons annually with 95% of shipments bound for the U.S., but the new objective this season would be to gain European share.

Exporters at the event emphasized the lack of efficient transport available to ship produce to Europe, which needed to be improved as melons only have a useful shelf life of 18 days, the story reported.

For this reason Purfresh Transport is offering exporters to use ozone-based technology to preserve fruit for a longer periods.

"The technology helps food safety and security. We are making the most of ozone properties to eliminate pathogenic organisms and have a treatment that eliminates fungus and bacteria that take over fruit during transport," the company's director for Central America and Mexico Miguel Ángel Gómez was quoted as saying.

Photo: El Heraldo


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