There are not many Chinese plums in overseas markets. Although the market demand for plums is of course not as large as the demand for apples and pears, the surface area devoted to plum plantation has expanded in recent years and many trees are now entering their most productive phase.
The overall production volume rapidly grows. Several traders have begun to look towards overseas markets in search for opportunities to expand their sales volume, while they continue to develop their share in the Chinese market. Manager Song Wei of Qingdao Futongda Trade Co., Ltd. recently shared his insights into, and predictions for, the Chinese domestic plum market.
"Favorable weather conditions resulted in an abundant plum harvest this year. The overall production volume is nearly twice the size of last year. Furthermore, both the product size and product quality are better than last year. As for the price, the plums are relatively cheap because the production volume rapidly expanded. The prices of some plum varieties dropped by nearly 50% in comparison with last year. Take for example the covered plums from Liaoning production areas. The current price is only around 1.6 yuan [0.22 USD] per 0.5 kg," stated manager Song.
"The export season of Chinese plums began in July and is expected to continue until early October. This is an experimental year for us. We exported more than 300 tons of plums this season. We mainly exported to Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, India, and the Philippines. As for our retail conditions this year, early in the season few overseas clients were familiar with our plums and the reception was lukewarm. These clients were at first reluctant to import new products. We spent much time on marketing and promotion. Later in the season, however, we began to receive positive feedback from our clients with regard to product quality. As market feedback improved, so did our orders."
"Our products were quickly sold out this season. We estimate that we can sell an ever larger volume to overseas traders next year. The main competition for Chinese plums comes from the USA and Turkey. These countries have been exporting plums for decades. The product quality is excellent and some of them are very well known. The only way for Chinese plums to stand out in the current international market is with low prices."
"Most of our plums come from production areas in Shaanxi and Liaoning. After we purchase our plums, they go through integrated processing and packaging, before we ship them in refrigerated shipping containers to end-markets. We package our plums in foam boxes," explained manager Song. "We want to improve the strength of our distribution network and bring the flavor of Chinese plums to an even large consumer audience. We want to raise the profile of Chinese plums in the international market."
In addition to plums, Qingdao Futongda Trade also sells apples, grapes, and a variety of quick-frozen vegetables.
For more information:
Song Wei - Manager
青岛福通达贸易有限公司//QINGDAO FAIRTEND TRADING CO., LTD
Tel.: +86 13455206314