Peru overtakes Bolivia in U.S. quinoa market
Peru has pipped Bolivia to the post when it comes to quinoa exports to the U.S., according to statistics from the United States Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS).
The crop, which was a key part of the pre-Hispanic diet and remains so for a large population of people in the Andes region of South America, has become very popular in Western countries due to its health benefits and distinct texture and taste.
For years Bolivia was the world's leading quinoa shipper with 15,407 metric tons (MT) recorded in 2013, but in 2014 Peru started edging closer with 12,360MT.
This figure was just behind Bolivia's 12,679MT for the same year.
But from January to November in 2015, the balance shifted in favor of Peru, which managed to export 13,758MT, compared to Bolivia's declining volume of 10,485MT.
Despite this change, prices for Bolivian quinoa have remained relatively higher in the U.S., reaching US$4.5 per kilogram (2.2 pounds) FOB (freight on board), compared to US$3.9 per kilogram for Peruvian quinoa.
Notwithstanding, prices for both originals fell, at a rate of 32% overall to US$6.6 per kilogram for Bolivian quinoa and US$5.5 per kilogram of Peruvian quinoa.
Photo: Blairingmedia, via Wikimedia Commons