"The most important watermelon variety is still the traditional watermelon with seeds: Quetzaly. However, the European export market remains difficult," explains Carlos Campo, of Potuga Fruit Co. in Panama. "We produce more than 5 million kilos of watermelons for export, with and without seeds. We also produce specialty crops, such as the Sunshine (yellow seedless) and small seedless watermelons, also known as mini-watermelons."
"Our season kicks off on week 7 and we believe it will last until week 17, which is in late April. We export mainly to Europe, especially to the Netherlands. However, the watermelon market in Europe is difficult at this time. Panama's watermelons definitely have potential thanks to the range of varieties, sizes and quality. Unfortunately, market prices are low due to oversupply in other countries. Panama has to compete with, for example, Costa Rica, but South America is also exporting to the same market, which can be seen in Panama's export statistics. Each year, fewer watermelons are exported to Europe.
In addition to growing the usual watermelon varieties, Potuga Fruit Company cultivates mini-watermelons and seedless watermelons. "It's good having these secondary products; in fact, it is harder and more expensive to cultivate this type of watermelon. Still, there is a large market in Europe, with good demand for mini and seedless products."
Potuga Fruit Company will be present at Fruit Logistica in Berlin. You will be able to find them in Hall 23, stand E-06, in the area devoted to Panama.
For more information:
Ing. Carlos Campos, M.B.APortuga Fruit Company