According to Davao Durian Council president Larry Miculob, Mindanao durians have started penetrating the US market, providing an economic opportunity for the growers of this fruit.
Miculob said the first batch of fruit, which consisted of around 300 kilos of arancillo, puyat, duyaya, and durio graveolens varieties, was shipped to the US via a Philippine Airlines flight last October 16. He added they hope to increase the export volume soon. The durians were sold at $69.99 dollars for a box of two kilos.
“The US market was quite surprising. They said [ours] is much better than what is sold in the local market… because when we export frozen durian meat, we can be 99.9% sure of its quality, unlike when you export whole durian, you can only ascertain its quality once you open it,” Miculob said.
He added that he hopes the entry of Philippine durian into the US market will encourage more farmers to grow more durian to increase the current production level. “We are looking at expanding the volume so we can send more. I hope the farmers realize that we have an opportunity to export, and the market in Manila is starting to expand.”
According to the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA), the Davao region produced 59,027 tons of durian in 2018, higher by 14 percent as compared to 51,818 tons produced in 2017.