World exports of tropical fruits dropped 5% in 2022

World exports of tropical fruits dropped 5% in 2022, FAO reports

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World exports of tropical fruits dropped 5% in 2022, FAO reports

A recent report by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) shows a 5% decrease year-on-year for tropical fruit exports in 2022 worldwide.

Mango, pineapple and avocado are among the most affected commodities. However, in contrast, global exports of papaya are expected to have grown by a modest 1%to 370,000 tons.

World exports of mango, mangosteen and guava are expected to decline by 5% to 2.1 million tons. Pineapple exports will contract by 1.5% to 3.2 million tons. While world avocado exports will fall by 6% to 2.4 million tons.

Regarding prices, the report said that average world export unit values of the four main tropical fruits have been showing a strong overall upward trend.

External factors affecting tropical fruit production

Production losses caused by a storm in June and drought conditions in the main production areas in Mexico could be at fault for this decrease. However, exports from other major producing countries such as Peru, Chile, Kenya and South Africa-are expected to have increased modestly, the report said.

Mexican papayas showed the opposite effect: an increase of about 4%, largely due to "production expansion." High air freight costs, however, have been cited as a hindrance to papayas' further growth prospects.

The Russian invasion of Ukraine has also disrupted tropical fruit markets in these countries. These declines "translated into 2.4% of global tropical fruit shipments having faced considerable obstacles in reaching their destination market by 2022."

Overall, the decline in the volume of produce exports was accompanied by an increase in prices. 

"Average indicative wholesale prices in the United States of America have been showing a strong upward trend for most of the major tropical fruits," the report said.

But rising prices were offset by rising costs. 

The report states that the considerable increase in input prices has simultaneously and significantly raised production costs. 

"Higher transportation costs, coupled with a global shortage of refrigerated containers, have put additional upward pressure on costs and squeezed margins in the first half of 2022, although some of these pressures appear to have abated during the second half."

Rising input costs were impacted by the disruption of Russian fertilizer shipments to major tropical fruit producing nations.

"Given the perishable nature of tropical fruits in production, trade and distribution, environmental challenges and insufficient infrastructure continue to jeopardize production and supply to international markets," the report stated.


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