Chile: Strong domestic market attracts greater avocado imports - FreshFruitPortal.com

Chile: Strong domestic market attracts greater avocado imports

Chile: Strong domestic market attracts greater avocado imports

High market prices in one of the world's top avocado-exporting nations have led to greater imports over the last couple of months than in previous years.

Chile registered no imports in January - as is normal - but in February some 509 metric tons (MT) were imported from Mexico, according to figures from Odepa.

As of March 23, this figure had risen to 1,050MT, of which the vast majority came from Mexico, along with smaller volumes from the U.S. (33MT) and Peru (44MT).

By the same date in March during previous years, the highest volumes imported was in 2015 when shipments of 486MT were registered. Last year the only 189MT were registered.

The months that typically see peak import volumes are May through August, with no more than 5,000MT ever imported in one single month.

Odepa figures show that in Santiago's Lo Valledor wholesale market, prices for grades 1 and 2 fruit averaged around CLP1.800 (US$3.00) at the end of December 2017, compared to an average of CLP1.600 (US$2.70) for the three years previous.

During this year, average prices reached a peak of CLP2.900 (US$4.80) in week 10, falling to CLP2.500 (US$4.20) in week 13. The latter figure is 50% higher than last year and 31% higher than the average of the three years previous.

The months that typically see peak import volumes are May through August, with no more than 5,000MT ever imported in one single month.

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