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ProHass launches a seal of guarantee for Peruvian Hass avocados

Emphasising their insistence on complying with the very highest quality requirements, this year they will have a seal of guarantee for importers, ensuring that the fruit they buy from Peru has at least 22.5-23% of dry matter

Following the World Avocado Congress in Lima, Peru, successfully organised by ProHass, the Peruvian Hass avocado industry is facing new challenges in 2016.

General director Arturo Medina explained that “we don’t know how the El Niño phenomenon is going to affect the fruit. Even so, this year we are hoping for growth of 15%, reaching about 185,000 tons.” This would establish it as the second Hass avocado exporter country in the world, behind only Mexico.

Europe will be the destination for 75%, while 20% goes to the US, and this year they will be present for the first time in Asia as of the beginning of the campaign. In this regard, Medina explained that “we are faced with a challenge as we know there is a demand for smaller sizes, but in Peru we produce bigger ones.”

Emphasising their insistence on complying with the very highest quality requirements, this year they will have a seal of guarantee for importers, ensuring that the fruit they buy from Peru has at least 22.5-23% of dry matter. Although the requirements to be met by the companies are established by the association, a private company has been hired to take charge of analysis, thus guaranteeing impartiality.

The ProHass members are the first to have taken up the initiative because they wish to set themselves apart from the rest, with the result that nearly 65% of the fruit exported will be under this quality seal. 

This article appeared on page 68 of issue 142 (March/April 2016) of Eurofresh Distribution magazine. Read that edition online here.

 

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Peru’s booming grape exports

Attractive prices, numerous overseas market opportunities and a major ramp up in production are behind the major boost in  Peru’s grape exports.

Peru’s grape exports have skyrocketed in the past decade, going from practically non-existent in the year 2000 to about 280,000 tons last year, reports the USDA Global Agricultural Information Network (GAIN).

In a new report, GAIN says that grapes are now one of Peru’s main agricultural exports, totalling $646 million the 2014, up 43% on the previous year. They were also up 50% in volume to 267,270 tons.

It said this significant change has been driven by attractive prices and numerous overseas market opportunities, and a major boost in production as a result of new areas planted in Peru.

Peru’s main grape markets in 2014 were:

  • US 44,123 tons
  • Netherlands 41,908 tons
  • China 35,391 tons
  • Other important destinations: Hong Kong, Russia, the U.K.

Grape production in Peru

Grape production in Peru was estimated to reach 520,000 tons last year.

The central valleys along the coast (e.g., Ica, Lima) are where Peru’s grape growing is concentrated. However, new areas in the Piura and Lambayeque regions on the northern coast are rapidly developing. While the average grape yield in Peru was 20 tons/ha in 2014, yields in Piura were up to 34 tons/ha.

The country mostly grows Red Globe but other varieties include Crimson seedless, Flame seedless, Sugraone and Thompson seedless.

Climate challenges

Pests are one of the challenges Peru faces as it seeks to significantly increase its grape production. “Countries with colder climates do not struggle with pests such as nematodes, but due to Peru’s mild weather, this pest has become a problem,” the report says. However, in the northern region of Piura, warm temperatures permit up to two harvests per year, which helps offset the negative effects of pests. Also, Peruvian producers are working to develop more resistant varieties.

Another challenge for the industry is the potential impact of the forecasted severe El Niño. “The majority the growing areas are expected to face either flooding or droughts depending on their location. Without proper preventative measures by farmers and the government, the industry may experience losses in productivity which may take time to recuperate.”

Source: GAIN Report, Peru: Fresh Deciduous Fruit Annual (January 7, 2016)