It is a common problem for all regional economies. The "blue" dollar and domestic inflation are leading to a loss of competition, and garlic does not escape the situation. This is raising concerns amongst growers, as production volumes are up and there are no markets to ship it.
Transactions have yet to be agreed on and responses are expected from Brazil and Europe, which are the main clients for Argentinian garlic, although it is warned that China and Spain will be fierce competitors.
This was reported by entrepreneurs within the sector, who pointed out that production costs have increased by around 750% since 2003, while dollars have grown in value by 80 to 85%. For example, shipping a container from Buenos Aires to Taiwan currently costs around 3,500 dollars and from Mendoza to Buenos Aires 3,000 dollars.
At one time, the province of Mendoza had almost 15,000 hectares planted, and this year the acreage barely surpasses the 7,500 hectares, while Spain doubled its production volumes, with a total of 18,000 hectares planted.
Regarding world shipments, in 2011 China was the largest exporter with 72.9% of the total, followed by Argentina, with 8%, and Spain, with 7%. These figures should drastically change this year if we are to take the acreage as reference.