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Mexican mango's marketing challenges

The Mexican mango market is in imminent need of finding new marketing alternatives. Mexico is the world's largest exporter of mangos. However, more than 85% of the country's exports are directed to the United States and, although the US market is large and mango consumption is steadily growing, it isn't able to absorb all the supply of this fruit. The experience in recent years shows that prices start to plummet after exporting 3 million boxes a week, which ultimately translates into losses for the farmers.

Therefore it is necessary to find alternatives; Europe is an excellent marketing alternative, however, shipments to Europe scarcely represent 2 % of total exports.

Bruno Castrezana, Frutikas Distributing manager, based in New York, said that this low volume wasn't due to a demand problem but to logistics. An alternative, the most competitive in terms of cost, is maritime transport; unfortunately the journey is very long (there are no direct routes to Europe) so when the fruit reaches its destination its quality is no longer the same. The second alternative is by airway, an option used by Caster, Frutikas' Mexican parent company, to export to European countries such as Spain, Switzerland and Germany, from 2004-2007. The problem is that the high freight costs made them lose competitiveness and it was impossible to reach high volumes.

In an attempt to improve the marketing of their product in the US, the Frutikas -Caster team has focused on quality and innovation. Caster, who is also Frutikas' provider, exports the mango from four strategically located production areas along the Mexican Pacific and cover the entire Mexican mango season. They have Global GAP certifications in industry, and are working toward certification in field through a program that teaches farmers good practices. Meanwhile, the Frutikas team is developing a packaging presentation for the 2014 mango season to help increase the consumption of this fruit through increased innovation, creativity and the launch of a new Social Responsibility campaign.

Frutikas currently focuses its business activities in the Northeastern US, where they distribute products mainly to local supermarket chains. Besides mangoes, the firm will soon introduce new products such as Persian lime and Hass avocado; fruit that they'll continue to market under their own brand: Fruit-Kas.

Frutikas will be present at the next edition of the PMA fair, to be held in New Orleans between the 18 and 20 of October, and which is perceived as a good opportunity to reach agreements with new clients, mainly in the United States. Europe will remain an attractive option, provided logistical connections improve in the future.

Frutikas Distributing LLC
Bruno A. Castrezana
Nueva York, EE.UU
Te: (+1) 347 502 5090

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