The Chinese domestic mango season starts in April. Mango prices have surged lately, and are now as high as 8 to 12 Yuan per kilogram (€1.10 to €1.65).
“In recent years, consumers prefer bigger mango sizes. Growers are trying to meet demand by trying to increase the size of their fruit. Due to the lack of scientific guidance, this could lead to wrong dosages or faulty application of fertilizers and other auxiliary products. I call for growers to stick to the original characteristics of their crop, and not to blindly try to meet market demand. I think it would be more advantageous for the industry if growers would try to increase general quality standards instead.”
Healthy Hainan mangoes
“Abnormal weather conditions and a cold wave hit the South of China in January. This has affected some of lychee and longan production on the island. This has also damaged part of the mango crop, pushing prices up even further.”
There is a threat to the local industry. An unknown disease has been affecting the crop since 2010, and its prevalence is increasing. Symptoms are dark spots on the skin, that grow and become darker over time. The spots make it difficult for growers to sell their crop. Even at heavily reduced prices, spotted mangoes are sold very little.
Hainan mango affected with the black spot disease
“Total mango output in Hainan is increasing. However, this season, only a few growers have not been affected by the disease. The disease does not affect the pulp of the mango and it does not affect the edibility of the fruit. But because the fruits look less attractive, it is very difficult for growers to find buyers. What is worse, is that there is no known cure here. It could be that the cause lies in inappropriate planting conditions and procedures. We are not aware of this, however,” explains Mengxiang Chun, of the Hainan Mango Association.
In China, the import season for Australian and Peruvian mangoes is coming to an end. Demand for domestic mangoes is strong. A popular domestic variety is the Guifei, or Royal Mountain mango variety, which is grown on Hainan.
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