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The exporters of horticultural products of Uzbekistan evaluate the results of 2020

The exporters of horticultural products of Uzbekistan evaluate the results of 2020
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Last year was a hard one for horticultural sector of Uzbekistan, reports the analytics of EastFruit site. Alongside with global challenges of logistics issues, fruit export and economic decline caused by the pandemic, an unexpected frost late in the spring damaged blossoming orchards vineyards. As the result, the export of horticultural produces fell by some 18% in terms of value in 2020. China showed the sharpest drop of the supplies; the export there decreased by half and amounted $12 million. Ukraine reduced its import by 24% and imported fruit valued $14 million, mainly melons, apricots and fresh greenery. The export to Turkey decreased by 28% and amounted to $30 million.

Fortunately, there is a positive side too. Uzbekistan increased its direct supplies to Russia by 64%, exporting there $274 million. Thus, the export of table grapes and kaki fruit doubled to reach $63 million and $19 million respectively; nectarines and cherry supplies grew by 3.4 and 3.3 times respectively ($36 million and $17 million); the export of apricots and tomatoes grew by 56% and 27%.


Source: EastFruit
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Uzbekistan’s stone fruit exports weather pandemic

Uzbekistan’s stone fruit exports weather pandemic


Uzbekistan is emerging as a key exporter of stone fruit. As of June 1, the central Asian country had exported 11,192 tons of apricots (worth US$10.9 million), according to the State Statistics Committee. The main markets are Kazakhstan (5,984 tons), Russia (3,600 tons) and Kyrgyzstan (1,210 tons). Meanwhile, Uzbekistan has also increased its exports of sweet cherries. Between January and April 2020, the country shipped 23,500 tons (US$48 million) of the fruit to 11 countries. These results are particularly impressive given the current pandemic. The largest markets for its sweet cherries are Kazakhstan (12,400 tons), Russia (6,700 tons), and Kyrgyzstan (4,100 tons), as well as South Korea, China, Poland, UAE, Belarus, Ukraine, Turkmenistan, and Thailand.


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Uzbekistan’s key produce event to be held on March 11-13 

Uzbekistan’s key produce event to be held on March 11-13 


Held in capital city Tashkent on March 11-13, AgroWorld Uzbekistan covers every single sector of the fresh produce business and provides a complete picture of the latest innovations, products and services at every link in the international supply chain. It thus offers superb networking and contact opportunities to the key decision-makers in every sector of the industry.

Uzbekistan is a major exporter on the international fruit and vegetable market. The country ranks second in the world in exports of apricots, in persimmon exports it occupies the third place and in cherries – the fifth place. The Uzbek cherry ripens earlier than in competitor countries by two or three weeks. The country also intends to increase the export of melons this year. Fruit and vegetable products are exported to 80 countries.

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Uzbekistan may push away China, Serbia and Moldova from Russian apple market within the nearest future, believe an expert


Thanks to numerous loans of international banks, fruit sector in Uzbekistan has been developing rapidly. Thus, the area of intensive apple orchards has been increasing, and this Central Asian country may considerably increase its apple export to Russia, squeezing away existing leaders: China, Serbia, Moldova and EU, reported Andrey Yarmak, economist of investment centre of FAO, to APK-Inform project. “The crop of Uzbek apples will reach some 1 million tons by 2020,” he said. “At the same time, local population is 33 million, so domestic market is not large; being an inland country hinders the export, therefore the producers will be ready to offer the best prices.” Neighbouring Russia is the most convenient trade partner, and Uzbek apples will be very competitive there.

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Uzbekistan increases its horticultural exports

Of the 65 types of fruit and vegetables exported by Uzbekistan in 2016, fresh sweet cherries had the highest share in terms of value (14.4%), followed by raisins (12.8%) and fresh apricots (7.63%).

In order to implement its priority tasks, the government of Uzbekistan is taking measures to increase the volume and expand the range of horticultural exports and to enter new markets.

Thanks to those measures, Uzbekistan exported 818,500 tons of fresh and processed fruit and vegetables in 2016 – up 38.3% on 2015. Of this volume, vegetables accounted for 242,100 tons, fruit for 229,600 tons and grapes for 96,200 tons.

Of the 65 types of fruit and vegetables exported by the country, fresh sweet cherries had the highest share in terms of value (14.4%), followed by raisins (12.8%) and fresh apricots (7.63%).

Uzbekistan exports horticultural produce to 43 countries. Last year, for the first time it exported capers to Italy and Spain, walnuts to Lebanon, raisins to Vietnam and Israel, dry vegetables to Belgium, fresh grapes and melons to Switzerland, and dry apricots to Holland.

In order to attract the attention of potential customers from various countries, two International fruit and vegetable fairs were held in Uzbekistan.

More than 300 professionals from 33 countries – representatives of trade, logistics and agricultural institutions and companies – took part, and export contracts valued more than €900,000 were signed. Export prices are regulated by the government of Uzbekistan.

Promotional activities also take place through trade houses, five of which were opened in 2016 in Russia and two in Kazakhstan.

There are plans to open more trade houses this year, namely in India, Germany, Poland, Latvia, the UAE and Belorussia.

To diversify its markets, the exporters from Uzbekistan plan to open regional offices in Kuwait, Oman, Japan and Korea, countries where there is demand for sweet cherries, melons, pomegranates, apricots, beans, legumes and dry fruit.

All these efforts are expected to deliver another yoy increase in Uzbekistan’s horticultural exports in 2017 – to the tune of 55%  – to reach a volume of 1.27 million tons.



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Turkey is Russia’s largest partner


About 1.13 billion tons of vegetables and 676 million tons of fresh fruit are produced per annum in the world. According to data from BAIB (West Mediterranean Exporters Union of Turkey), world fresh exports in 2014 reached US $110 billion with the largest share from bananas (9.1%), tomatoes (8%), table grapes (7.3 %) and apples (6.8%).

Turkey benefits from extensive lands and a favourable climate and is a traditionally agricultural country. The country cultivates 28.5 million tons of vegetables and 18.2 million tons of fruit. It is a world leading grower of various fresh products:

  • No. 1. world producer of figs (26%), cherries (21%), quinces (18%) and apricots (19%);
  • No. 2. producer of melons and gherkins;
  • No. 3. producer of apples, tomatoes, watermelons and mandarins;
  • No. 4. pepper producer;
  • No. 5. aubergine producer.

One of the leading world producers and exporters

In 2014, Turkey exported 3.5 million tons of fresh fruit and vegetables valued at $US 2.3 billion. Citrus fruit exports came to $ 942 million (1.5 million tons), and other fruit exports to $720 million (775,000 tons). Vegetable exports were valued at $710 million (1.1 million tons). The country is the leading worldwide exporter in:

  • No. 1. exporter of figs;
  • No. 3. exporter of lemons, mandarins and cherries;
  • No. 4 tomato and apricot exporter;
  • No. 5 orange and grapefruit exporter.

The main destination for Turkey is Russia ($938 million, 39% of total exports). The country’s other large sales markets are Iraq, Germany, Ukraine and Bulgaria.

Turkey is also the largest source for Russian imports of fresh fruit and vegetables, accounting for 17.9% of the total. Other Russian import sources are Ecuador (11.9%), Egypt (5.6%) and Spain (5.5%).

Throughout Turkey, there are 60 exporter unions. West Mediterranean Union, established in 1968, groups together exporters from 25 different sectors from the region around the cities of Antalya, Burdur and Isparta. The fresh fruit and vegetable industry is the leading sector for regional export activity.

The Mediterranean Exporter Union based in Mersin is the Turkish coordinator for the sector. It has 990 members exporting fresh products.

Egypt guarantees high quality products

“Egyptian Agriculture Service & Trade Co. (EGAST) was established 30 years ago,” said Dr. Hatem El Shalma, the company’s CEO. “We trade in onions, potatoes, oranges, and are going to do pomegranates soon. All of these are grown by our farmers, and we control all the processes and guarantee the quality for our customers.”

Last year, potato production amounted to 70,000 tons. It was traded locally, sold to processing industries (Lay’s, etc.) and exported to Russia, Europe and the Far East. Production of onions came to 15,000 tons, exported to Russia and Asia. Production of oranges was 10,000 tons, but this will double next year. They were shipped to Russia and also to Asia: China, Bangladesh, Malaysia and India. “They are a fast growing market and we are pleased with our sales there,” El Shalma said.

EGAST participates in the World Food exhibition because Russia is the largest market for sales. “It is vital to choose a reliable partner,” he said.

El Wadi, the oldest exporter from Egypt

“Our company is a pioneer in Egypt,” says Mohamed Elbialy, Export Manager for El Wadi Export Co. “It was established in 1964 and at that time had exclusive rights to export agricultural products. Russia was our main partner and remains the largest market for us.”

The basic fresh products traded by El Wadi are citrus and other fruit, onions, garlic and other vegetables. Last season, the company exported 80,000 t of oranges, 10,000-15,000 t of onions, 5,000 t of lemons, 3,000 t of potatoes, etc. “We shipped 30,000 t of fruit and vegetables to Russia,” says Elbialy. “After the introduction of the embargo, demand has grown. We also supplied 10,000 t of goods to Europe and 30,000 t to the Middle and Far East and to Asia.” Indeed, the Far East is a growing market. Pomegranates, grapefruit, strawberries, semi-dried dates and other fruit are exported on a large scale. Last year the protocol with China was signed and the company has shipped 100 containers of Egyptian goods there.

El Wadi owns 4,250 acres of orchards where Naval, Baladi and Valencia oranges are grown. Several specialized production stations have been set up in various regions of the country and equipped with modern machinery.

Thanks to its great experience, the company has become distinctive in choosing the best products, preparing and packing them so as to comply with the best international standards: ISO 9001:2000, ISO 22000, HACCP, BRC, GlobalGAP, etc.

Uzbekistan also grows and exports

The volume of Uzbek fruit and vegetables exported to Kazakhstan grew by 10% in 2014, but their exports to Russia have decreased by the same volume. “The reason is the lack of tariff preferences for our products,” states the Vice President of Uzbekistan, Rustam Azimov.  As a result, “grey” schemes are used, and re-export from Kazakhstan keeps growing. “The application of the preferences will help to reduce prices for our products.”

In the 1st quarter of 2015, Uzbekistan produced 1.3 million t of potatoes, 2.6 million t of vegetables, 163,000 t of cucurbitaceae, 840,000 t of fruit and berries and 24,000 t of grapes. There were 21,800 ha of orchards and 16,600 ha of grapes planted and reconstructed, while 264 ha of hothouses in 500 farms and 400 ha in 9,300 of subsidiary smallholdings were built.

Second wave of ruble devaluation, 27% drop in consumer spending

The official rate of the dollar in Russia grew by 10% last August. Inflation has been at 15.6 % since the beginning of 2015 while the population’s real income has fallen by 2.9%. More than 60% of the population have reduced their travel and food expenses. In fact, 65% of Russians cut down on food spending, while 27% spent less on clothes and shoes, and 17% less on entertainment.

Mexican berries in Russia, too

Berries Paradise, one of the largest Mexican berry producers, has also begun to supply the Russian market, besides Japan and other Asian countries. While expanding its destinations, the company is going to enter the markets of China and Dubai. “Russia is an important target market for us,” said international sales manager Ana Blanca Solis. “That is why we are participating in the World Food exhibition. We have observed Russian interest in our berries and hope to find new customers.”

Berries Paradise is a group of companies producing and exporting blueberries, raspberries and blackberries. “Last season, we delivered over 4 million boxes,” she said. The crop is available from mid-September till June. The berries are exported mainly to the US, Asia and Europe, including the Netherlands, Germany, Spain and the UK.

Organics also in more demand in the East

“We aim to show people a different way of life; a life in harmony with nature,” said Milena Tsvetanova, from the purchasing department of Balev Bio Ltd, one of the leading Bulgarian companies specialised in importing organic food and non-food products. The company cooperates with more than 400 suppliers, mainly from Europe, and its range of products includes more than 4,000 items.

The company owns and runs three organic shops under the Balev Bio Market brand in the biggest cities in Bulgaria: Sofia, Varna and Plovdiv. An online store was also launched recently. “Our clients are the biggest supermarket chains, specialist organic food shops and health food stores, restaurants, etc.,” Tsvetanova said.
A fifth of its turnover comes from fruit and vegetables, its assortment of which covers 300 items. The most popular products are bananas, citrus, apples, avocadoes, tomatoes, cucumbers, carrots, etc. At the beginning of summer, Balev Bio offered its customers exotic fruits like mango, papaya, mangosteen, passion fruit, rambutan, red banana, longkong, etc. In the summer season, watermelons, melons, figs, peaches, apricots, tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers, courgettes, lettuces etc. were sold.

To promote their products, Balev Bio uses social networks, signboards and tastings in shops to provide as much information as possible about the benefits of its products.

The Bulgarian organic market for fruit and vegetables is not big, however interest in organic consumption has been growing slowly but steadily.


WorldFood Moscow