Chilean cherries hit new exports record
Chile set a new record for cherry exports this past season, with volumes rising by 17% year-on-year to 415,315 tons. The main destination markets include China, the U.S. and South Korea. Cherries represent 25% of Chile's total fresh fruit exports as of April 2023.
North America is currently the second largest market for this Chilean fruit, with 18,894 tons shipped this season.
For the 2022-23 campaign, the U.S. imported 17,820 tons, an almost 40% rise year-on-year.
"This season not only the logistics worked better, but also the weather helped us to have very good quality. In addition, the release of the COVID-Zero restrictions in China allowed people to leave their homes more freely. All of which helped to boost consumption," said Ivan Marambio, president of Chile’s Fruit Exporters Association (ASOEX).
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Claudia Soler, manager of the ASOEX Cherry Committee, also said that the improvement in logistics was a huge factor in the good results the sector saw this past season.
"This makes it clear that the Chinese consumer is an informed consumer who rewards good products and punishes those that do not meet his expectations," Soler said.
Soler also mentioned that the campaign exceeded the goals set for each of the promotional activities in China, the U.S. and Korea, where the objective was to “deepen the product’s presence and knowledge”.
Europe is the fourth most profitable destination for Chilean cherries, with 4,612 tons shipped. However, for 2022.23, these figures showed a decrease of 26%.
"The decline in European markets is explained by logistical problems, especially in the main ports for our cherries such as England and Holland, which saw decreases of 27% and 45%, respectively. In addition, the inflation that has hit Europe has been significant, affecting the consumption of imported fresh products such as our cherries," added Marambio.