In the last decade, Peruvian agricultural exports grew by more than 136%, that is, they went from a little more than US$4,000 million in 2012 to more than US$9,800 million last year. This dynamism was driven, for the most part, by the advance of non-traditional agricultural exports that in this same period grew 176% and during 2022 exceeded US$8.5 billion, according to data from Sunat.
Last year, in a scenario marked by the war in Ukraine, the fertilizer crisis and inflation, shipments in this sector closed 12.65% above 2021.
In 2023, its performance will depend on what happens in the coming months, given the possible arrival of the El Niño Costero phenomenon, he points out. Raphael Zachnichmanager of ComexPeru Economic Studies.
However, the weather event will not affect the agro-export matrix and they will continue to lead products such as blueberries, grapes, avocados, asparagus, mangoes and artichokes, Zacnich points out.
“But surely there will be much more export of kion (ginger), onion and many other products that are associated with the issue of health”, he warns. In fact, in January ginger shipments exceeded US$6 millionwhich meant an interannual growth of 6.9%.
In the opinion of the Comex Peru spokesperson, this year the destinations of agricultural exports will not change either, and the United States will continue to lead the market. This country in 2022 concentrated 36.26% of non-traditional agricultural shipments. The Netherlands and China will also continue in the first places.
Mango could grow 2%
In line with previous forecasts, mangoes would continue to be one of the flagship products this year. Well, the exports of this fruit, whose campaign began in November and will end between March and April, will not have a significant impact due to the intense rains that hit the interior of the country, says Juan Carlos Rivera, manager of the Peruvian Association of Mango Producers (APEM).
In this sense, it indicates that until the first half of March, around 229,000 tons of this product were dispatched. “We could reach 235,000 tons, and this is 1% or 2% higher than the previous campaign”comment.
the 2022 the fresh mango, although it fell by -5.84%, it was positioned among the five main non-traditional agricultural export products and generated close to US$330.3 million. In January it fell -1.6% and mobilized approximately US$77 million.
The drop in the first month of the year could be explained by over-exports, especially to the US market that was registered in the second half of December, which caused importers to suspend or reduce their orders in the following weeks. “(Exports) only returned to normal in the fourth week of 2023,” says the APEM representative.
The grape lost in January
The grape is another product that is at the end of its 2022-2023 campaign. The harvest, which begins in September and runs through April, will end in the next two weeks, he says. Alexander Cabreramanager of the Association of Table Grape Producers of Peru (Provide).
The representative of the business union details that until the tenth week of 2023 the shipments of this fruit exceeded the total volume exported in the previous campaign by 8%. “We are talking about 68.9 million boxes of 8.2 kilograms”, details. That is, around 564.9 million tons.
The growth in shipments could mean the return of the grape to the top of non-traditional agro-exports. Last year, for the first time, it was overtaken by blueberries and came in second with just over $1.361 million.
However, the increase in supply, and not necessarily also in demand, causes prices to be affected. In January, shipments of grapes generated US$334 million, which meant a loss of -1.0% compared to the result of the same month of the previous year.
To this is added that at the beginning of 2023 the stoppages that affected regions such as Ica prevented the mobilization of the grape to the ports for export, and in some cases it was even impossible to harvest it. Thus, when shipments were reactivated at 100%, shipments had to be redirected to closer destinations to save the product. “We avoided exporting to Asia, which is our destination with the longest travel time, and the one that pays the best”says Cabrera.
The mangoes and grapes give way to the avocado whose harvest extends from this month until September. Contrary to the other export products, this one could be affected by the rainfall that still continues in the interior of the country. The potentially affected would be more than 18,000 small producers with two or less hectares of crops, says Juan Carlos Paredespresident of Prohass.
However, Paredes indicates that Hass avocado exports this year would reach 640,000 tons, which means an increase of 17% compared to the result of the previous harvest season. Of this estimate, 20,000 tons would be at risk from the rains.
Last year the avocado ranked third in non-traditional agricultural exports with more than US$895 million. In January of this year, it generated around US$9 million, which meant a drop of -5.7% year-on-year.
New markets for the Peruvian grape
To avoid an oversupply of grapes, it is essential to get as many markets as possible, he points out. Alexander Cabrera of Provide.
For this reason, the recent opening of the Japanese market for Peruvian grapes stands out. “It is a good indicator. We hope this year to achieve the opening of the Chilean and Israeli marketsand in the medium term of Ecuador and Australia”, he comments.
Rafael Zacnich, ComexPeru
“We are waiting to open new products, such as pomegranates, raspberries and other types of berries, to enter the US market, China and Europe.”
Juan Carlos Rivera, APEM Manager
“In Peruvian mango there are quite a few members of the chain. It is estimated that there are 14,000 producers and 150 exporters. The industry is very fragmented. It is necessary to consolidate groups”.
Juan Carlos Paredes, President of Prohass
“What worries us is that there are 18,000 producers who are involved in the Hass avocado production activity with 2 or less hectares, and they could have different difficulties due to the rains.”
Infographic: The Republic
Alia is a professional author and journalist, working at 247 news agency. She writes on various topics from economy news to general interest pieces, providing readers with relevant and informative content. With years of experience, she brings a unique perspective and in-depth analysis to her work.