The Spanish export of fresh fruits and vegetables in the first quarter of 2019 has improved by 8% in terms of volume and by 5% in terms of value, totaling 3.8 million tons and 4,040 million Euro, according to data from the first quarter of 2019 supplied by the Department of Customs and Special Taxes.
Between January and March of this year, vegetables have registered a remarkable growth, both in terms of volume, with 5% more compared to the same period of 2018, and in terms of value, with 12% more, reaching 2 million tons and 2,194 million Euro. The largest volumes corresponded to tomatoes, peppers and lettuce, with sales exceeding 300,000 tons worth 397 million Euro in the case of tomatoes (+2%), 467 million in the case of peppers (+16%) and 300 million Euro in the case of lettuce (+18%). Next in the ranking are cucumbers, with 268,245 tons (+14%) and 241 million Euro (+4%) and cabbages, with 218,613 tons (+19%) and 227 million Euro (+27%).
Fruits have recorded a notable growth in the export volume, with 10% more and 1.8 million tons, and a 2% drop in terms of value, with 1,846 million Euro, largely due to citrus fruits, which account for the largest export volumes in this period. Far behind we have strawberries, with 126,376 tons (+26%) and 303 million Euro (+14%).
By regions, Andalusia is the main exporter, with 1.4 million tons (12% more than in the first quarter of 2018) worth 1,919 million Euro (+13%), followed by the Region of Valencia, with 1.2 million tons (+ 11%) and 1,069 million Euro (-4%) and Murcia, with 692,789 tons (-1%) and 677 million Euro (+5%).
The EU was the destination for 93% of Spanish exports, with 3.5 million tons (+7%) worth 3,753 million Euro (+5%). Outside the EU, a total of 263,462 tons worth 287 million Euro went to non-EU European countries, with Switzerland and Norway as the main destinations. Lastly, 160,225 tons worth 155 million Euro went to all other non-European countries.
During the period at hand, imports grew by 9% in terms of volume and by 15% in terms of value, totaling 895,144 tons and 804 million Euro. Potatoes were the most purchased product, with 314,748 tons (+7%) worth 113 million Euro (+107%), according to the data of the Department of Customs and Special Taxes.