May was a record-breaking month in Spain for both the import of bananas from third countries and the supply volume available in the peninsular and Balearic market. We must go back at least to May 2009; that is, ten years ago, to find a similar situation.
In the period under analysis, imports from Costa Rica (8,903 tons) and Colombia (7,957 tons) stood out the most, accounting for about 55% of the total volume imported from third countries in May. Foreign bananas accounted for between 36% and 50% of the total supply available in the biggest market for the Canary Islands, which is the Iberian Peninsula and the Balearic Islands.
Last May, some 39,157 tons were shipped from the Canary Islands to the peninsular and Balearic market, while some 30,640 were imported from abroad. Since re-exports stood at 9,065 tons, the total available supply amounted to around 60,732 tons. Compared with the previous month, the volumes arriving from the Canary Islands grew by 12.1%; imports by 3% and re-exports by 13.5%, so overall, the available supply was 7.1% greater than in April.
If we look at the data for the first five months of 2019, Spanish consumers had access to about 290,087 tons of bananas; 20,076 more than in the same period last year, which entails a 7.4% growth. The archipelago shipped 3,391 tons less than in the previous year (-1.9%), while banana imports have increased by 19,253 tons (+13.9%) and re-exports have fallen by 4,215 tonnes (-9.2%).
The market share of imported bananas last May oscillated between a minimum of 36% and a maximum of 50%. Meanwhile, in the first five months of 2019, imported bananas already accounted for between 40% and 55% of the total supply, while in the same month of 2018 that percentage had stood between 35% and 51%.