Chilean stonefruit prices recover in U.S. market amid lower volumes
Data from the USDA shows that during the first ten weeks of the year, peach prices averaged US$17.60 a box at the importer level in the city of Philadelphia, putting them 14% higher than last year and similar to 2016.
Nectarine prices rose 21% to US$17.10 a box, putting them slightly below 2016 levels, while plum prices have continued their steady upward trend seen over the last couple of years and in 2018 rose 4% to US$17.20.
As for volumes, Chilean peach exports to the U.S. for the season through February were 6% down year-on-year at 12,800 metric tons (MT), according to Chile's ODEPA. Chile's share of the U.S. peach market during the period also fell from 66% to 58%.
U.S.-bound nectarine shipments were 27% down at 14,800MT, with the U.S. market share falling from 44% to 33%. This change came in tandem with a significant increase in exports to China, which opened for Chilean nectarine shippers in February last year. Over the period Chile took a 23% share of the Chinese nectarine market.
Meanwhile, Chilean plum exports to the U.S. were 26% down year-on-year at 10,000MT, while the U.S. market share fell from 30% to 27%.