COSCO Haikula, the first direct COSCO cherry express service to Shanghai, carrying premium cherries from Chile, arrived at the Shanghai Yangshan Port at 15:30 on December 31. Counter to China’s fresh fruit harvest seasons, Chilean cherries are available from November to March, filling the market gap and becoming one of the most popular fruits to celebrate the New Year’s Day and the Spring Festival.
China has become the largest consumer market for Chilean cherries. Taking 2018 as an example, nearly 90% of cherries sold in the Chinese market were imported from Chile. 92.3% of Chilean cherries were exported to Asia, of which, 95% entered the Chinese market.
Under the framework of trade shows such as the second edition of China International Import Expo and China International Fruit Conference, Chinese importers and Chilean exporters reached a number of sales agreements on cherries, and the overall import volume has increased by about 30% compared with previous years.
COSCO Shipping decided to provide a cherry express service from Chile's Manzanillo port to the Shanghai Yangshan Port during the 2019-2020 Chilean cherry season. The service was loaded with nearly 378 containers of about 7,700 tons of cherries in total.
According to the shipping company, the direct service optimized the transport route and duration. Cherries were directly transported to Shanghai by reefers after only 23 days at sea, saving 8-13 days, reducing cost and time. Consumers will be able to buy better-quality and more affordable sea freight cherries during this New Year's Day and Spring Festival.