Jan Kees Boon, Fruit and Vegetable Facts

Norway: Stable import market for fresh fruit and vegetables

The Norwegian import of fresh fruit and vegetables fell slightly (1%) in 2017, returning to the level of previous years. With a volume of 477 000 tonnes, valued at EUR850 million, Norway is a modest importer of fresh fruit and vegetables. Regarding value, Norway ranks 25th when it comes to global importing countries and 50th regarding volume. 

The import of fresh fruit did, however, increase last year, reaching a record volume of 355 000 tonnes. The import of fresh vegetables dropped by 5% to 122 000 tonnes. Spain is this country's most important supplier of fresh fruit and vegetables. With regards to Norwegian import statistics, the Netherlands is at number two with a volume of 47 000 tonnes. This is 7% more than in 2016 but less than in 2015. These import volumes from the Netherlands exclude re-exports. When these are included, the volume of fresh fruit and vegetables exported (via) the Netherlands to Norway rises to about 140 000 tonnes. Norway is the 17th largest buyer of Dutch export products. Including re-exporting, this ranking climbs to 12th position.

Norway is a modest producer of, primarily, vegetables
Norway is a small producer of fruit and vegetables. The production of fruit is quite limited in scale. For years, this has fluctuated at around 25 000 tonnes. Vegetable production is, however, of greater importance. This trend is increasing and, at the moment, is at around the 200 000-ton mark. Here, it is predominantly coarse open field production. About 25 000 tonnes of greenhouse vegetables are harvested in Norway.

With fresh vegetables, the home-grown share is at about 60% of the total. With locally-grown fruit, this is about 7%. These numbers have remained unchanged for several years now.

The range of imported fruits is quite stable. There is growth concerning mandarins, mangoes, avocados, lemons and blueberries. Bananas are, by far, the most important import product when it comes to fresh fruit and vegetables. Imports volumes grew last year to a level of 86 000 tonnes. This is followed by apples (47 000 tonnes), oranges (35 000 tonnes), mandarins (31 500 tonnes), and grapes (25 400 tonnes). Only the import volumes of mandarins in on the rise. The import numbers of the other products fluctuate year-on-year. Only then, the first vegetable imports follow; tomatoes at 23 600 tonnes. Tomato imports have been on the practically the same level since 2013. The import of capsicums is still growing slightly and increased to almost 20 000 tonnes in 2017. Many products' imports fluctuate a little from year to year. There are very few real growth products. Only the import volumes of avocados, lemons, mangoes, and blueberries are still increasing. It is noticeable that the import of pears is on a downward trend.

A quarter of fresh vegetables come from the Netherlands
In 2014, the import of fresh fruit and vegetables from the Netherlands was at an all-time high with a volume of more than 54 000 tonnes. In 2016, there was a dip, and in 2017, it was more than 47 400 tonnes. The Netherlands' share of the total has been fluctuating at around the 10% mark for years. With fresh vegetables, the Netherlands' share is more than a quarter. With fresh fruit, this share is only 4% (with pears, it is more than half!) In 2017; capsicum was the most important Dutch import product. The volume climbed to more than 10 000 tonnes. This brought the Netherlands' share in the total import of capsicums to more than 50%. Tomatoes are the second most imported product in terms of Norwegian imports from the Netherlands, although this trend in on a slight decline.

Last year it was 9 600 tonnes, 40% of the total amount of tomatoes imported. The import of pears from the Netherlands has recovered. It was, however, at only 9 150 tonnes not yet as much as a few years ago. More than half of Norway's imported pears come from the Netherlands. Other products that are imported from the Netherlands are: strawberries (4 400 tonnes in 2017), mushrooms(3 000 tonnes), onions (1 900 tonnes), leeks (1 400 tonnes), cucumber (1 400 tonnes), beetroot (1 300 tonnes) and carrots (1 250 tonnes in 2017). Only mushrooms can be regarded as a growth product.

Jan Kees Boon 
Fruit and Vegetable Facts 

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