Chilean stone fruit closing a “record” export season

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Chilean stone fruit closing a “record” export season

Despite a challenging campaign that brought mixed results, Frutas de Chile’s Stone Fruit Committee posted a positive summary of the 2023-24 season.

This season, the sector’s export volumes and FOB values reached a record high, with sugar plums, nectarines, apricots, and peaches achieving great results.

The main destination for Chilean stone fruit this season was China, accounting for 56% of overall shipments and scoring a 25% rise year-on-year, the committee’s report stated. 

The United States took a 19% share of shipments, noting a 1% decrease year-on-year but with a significant 20% uptick in FOB value.

“With 36.6 million boxes of stone fruit shipped to destination markets, we scored a 18% rise in exports this year,” Frutas de Chile Presiden Iván Marambio said. “FOB values also rose by 14% to $519 million, and this growth is setting a new era of recovery for Chilean stone fruit”.


Japanese plum exports rose by 24%, reaching 13,959,016 boxes. Nectarines increased by 14% in shipments, totaling 1.6 million boxes. Sugar Plums experienced a 23% increase, totaling 8.1 million boxes. Apricot exports also grew by 48% over the previous season. As for peaches, shipments decreased by 2% to 2.8 million boxes.

Chilean Stone Fruit Committee Executive Director Ignacio Caballero, said that "the results of the end of the season reflect, in addition to a recovery in the volume of this category, a new momentum in this industry thanks to the work and guidelines of the recently formed Stone Stone Fruit Committee, which should represent close to 80% of the total volume of fresh stone fruit exported by Chile during the next season. Despite the good news, there are still many challenges to work on, especially in China, after the results obtained".

Regarding destinations, Caballero explained that the three main markets for Japanese plums were China, which accounted for 34% of the total volume exported, the United States, which imported 19% of the total, and Brazil, with a 9% share. These three markets, in turn, reflected a 20% growth in volumes.

"In the case of European plums, where almost all the volume goes to China, it was a very difficult season. In addition to the significant growth of 24%, peak volumes concentrated in fewer weeks, which combined with a less-than-ideal condition of the fruit on arrival. We have a lot of work to do for next season so that this situation is not repeated," added Caballero.

He argued that in the case of nectarines, the main markets were China with 43% of total shipments, and an increase in export volumes of 32% over the previous year. In second place is the United States with a 24% share and a decrease of 11% in volume compared to 2022-2023. And in third place is the Netherlands, with 5% of the total volume and a growth of 49%.

"The growth driver was the white-fleshed nectarines, which grew the most (25%), representing 59% of total nectarines," Caballero added.

Finally, peaches were destined for the United States with 48% of the total shipped to the world, followed by Mexico with 21% and Brazil with 11%. 

"The big milestone this season was the opening of the Chinese market, where 60,000 8 kg boxes were shipped, representing 2% of total shipments, a higher volume is expected next season," he noted.

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