Ecuador pitahaya exports reach 29,000 tons

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Ecuador pitahaya exports reach 29,000 tons

Ecuador’s Agency for Regulation and Phytosanitary and Zoosanitary Control (Agrocalidad) reports the certification of 4,779 pitahaya shipments to date, to 20 destinations, with more than 29,000  tons exported.

Agrocalidad indicated that currently about 7,435 people are linked to the agricultural chain of Ecuadorian pitahaya, which is concentrated in the provinces of Guayas, Manabí, and Morona Santiago.


The Agency implemented since July 1 of this year, the issuance of Electronic Phytosanitary Certificates (ePhyto) for the United States of all pitahaya shipments.

So far, about 140 certificates have been issued, with direct transmission to the HUB system and with Aphis reception.

In  March 2023 , Ecuador’s  Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock, through the Undersecretariat of Agricultural Marketing, held three meetings with the objective of "Socializing and validating the proposed strategic plan for the yellow and red pitahaya chain, with the participation of the direct and indirect stakeholders involved."

Production spoke with the manager of Hacienda Laia Margarita, Ramón Martínez, a company that currently produces 50 acres of pitahaya. 

"We grow 80% organic crops, we are very meticulous and we respect the environment and the soils so that they are productive. The products we use are organic, and of biological origin, so we look for inputs that are as healthy as possible," says Martinez.

Martínez added "we export 90% of our production through Sweet Seasons to markets such as the United States, Spain, France, Italy, Romania, Poland, and Bulgaria. For us, the market is a continuous challenge and we always try to be one step ahead."

"We are recognized in international markets for the quality of the fruit, which is known as the yellow box," said Martinez.


Agrocalidad conducts phytosanitary activities such as surveillance, sampling, identification, training, and supervision of the fruit fly trapping service in order to comply with Ecuadorian pitahaya work plans established by trading partners.

In this regard, Martinez says there is weekly monitoring with the agency, to have zero fruit fly incidence, "because it is one of the great challenges we have as an industry since the U.S. does not want any product that has fruit fly. We’ve had zero incidents in seven years."

Martínez adds that certification is a  market requirement, "but it also certifies the quality of the fruit and provides phytosanitary guarantees to consumers.”

Hacienda Laia Margarita grows and exports the world’s best red pitahaya, which involves a line for washing, drying, and classifying the fruit. “And now we are implementing a technology that we are going to start testing, which is ozone, to extend the post-harvest life of the fruit," notes Martinez.

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