On August 15, 2018, President Erdogan of Turkey introduced a second round of countermeasures on products of US origin. This doubles the additional levies that were implemented on June 25, 2018. The additional tariffs relate to the same products from the June 25th decision, and include tree nuts, machinery and equipment. Turkey announced these measures in retaliation to the US imposition of steel and aluminium import tariffs.
Turkey doubles additional levies on US products
Fruit and Veg Mafia scam exposed in Palermo
Palermo's Antimafia Investigations Directorate (DIA) has confiscated assets worth €150 million from a pair of brothers who for years orchestrated the infiltration of Palermo’s largest fruit and vegetable market. Angelo and Giuseppe Ingrassia exercised hidden control over the sale of fruit and vegetables in the market on Via Montepellegrino on behalf of the Galatolo clan, working through nominee directors.
FTAs likely to lead to increased competition in lucrative Japanese fruit market
A new free trade agreement between Japan and members of the Comprehensive and Progressive Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), as well as an economic partnership agreement soon to be sealed between Japan and the EU, will generate increased competition between the world’s exporters for shares of Japan’s fruit market. This could be felt most strongly by Australia’s and Chile’s fresh orange and grape producers. In 2017, Japan imported approximately US$2.55 billion of fresh fruit products, of which 19.5% was from the United States.
Exports of US cherries to Japan plunge by 46%
US cherry exports to Japan are set to plummet by 46% in 2018/19 as a result of lower production and higher prices. At the same time, Japanese cherry production continues to shrink as the farming population ages . A shift to new varieties like Benishuho, which can extend the season, also contributed to the drop in harvested area. This transition period is expected to last until 2025.
Oxfam report on Dutch supermarkets calls for action to alleviate harm down the production chain
Oxfam has released a report on the effect of the Dutch supermarket sector on the conditions of workers in poor countries. The largest two Dutch supermarket chains control over half of the market, with turnover growing steadily over the past decade. Competition for consumers is fierce, with customers attracted by low prices for good quality food and a wide variety of options year-round. The report details how the growing dominance of supermarkets in the Netherlands and elsewhere has negative impacts on millions of farmers and workers who grow and process food under harsh conditions.
ASOEX and FDF present programme for Chile’s fruit exports from the central-southern region
In Chile, a ‘Strategic Programme for the Export of Fruit Production’ has been announced for the South Central Zone. The project, coordinated by the Foundation for Fruit Development (FDF) in collaboration with the Ministry of Agriculture, the Association of Fruit Exporters of Chile (ASOEX), and sin addition to the blueberry and kiwis committees, as well as university research departments, seeks to support the development and competitiveness of the fruit producing and exporting sector by offering tools to deal with climate change and the requirements of international markets.
Total Produce pursue continued growth
Despite having recently acquired a 45% stake in Dole, Total Produce is targeting even greater growth in 2018. The Dole transaction reflects a continuation of the group’s successful expansion strategy. However, unusual weather conditions and currency movements will restrict growth in the first half of the year.
Colombian fruit exporters turn their eyes to China and South Korea
Colombia’s fruit producers have set their sights on the markets of South Korea and China. Agriculture minister Juan Guillermo Zuluaga indicated his government’s intention to forge closer trade ties with these countries, where demand for high-quality tropical products is growing. With a Free Trade Agreement signed in 2016 with South Korea, Colombian delegations have been working hard to seal protocols that will allow the entry of several of its products. Indeed, Colombian exports to South Korea rose 44% between 2010 and 2017, to US$104m.
EU imports of fruits and vegetables from third countries up 5% in 2017
According to Eurostat, imports to the EU of fruits and vegetables from third countries rose by 5% in 2017 to 15.5 million tons. About 13.3 million tons of the total imports were fruits (+6%) and 2.2 million tons were vegetables (+1%). The main imported products are banana (5.9 million tons, +7%), orange (1.1 million tons, +11%) and pineapple (941,000 tons, +11%). Other significant imports were apples (448,000 tons, +1%) and avocados (486,000 tons, +9%).
Meeting of ODEPA and ASOEX focuses on exports of Chilean fruits to the Far East
In a meeting between Chile’s main agricultural bodies, representatives of ASOEX pushed for the speeding up of the process of Chilean pears entering China and its avocados entering South Korea. The meeting also discussed the progress of exports of Chilean avocados and blueberries to the Indian market, an agreement that was signed in April 2017 by the Assistant Secretary of Agriculture and the Joint Secretary of the Ministry of Agriculture of India, Ashwani Kumar