Brazil positioned itself as the main export destination for Argentine apples produced in the Rio Negro and Neuquen Valley, as the sector shipped 27,957 tons of apples to that market in 2019, i.e. 42% more than in the 2018 season.
According to data provided by the National Agricultural Food Health and Quality Service (SENASA), only 17% of this exportable offer was completed in the first half of the year. 83% of all sales to Brazil, equivalent to a volume of 23,100 tons, took place in the July to December period.
The year-on-year jump in 2019 is important, especially when taking into account that, in March of last year, the Brazilian phytosanitary authorities closed the borders to Argentine pears and apples due to Carpocapsa problems. However, the volume shipped last year is far from the volumes that Brazil historically bought from the Rio Negro and Neuquen Valley; for example, in the 1998 season the neighboring country imported from this region just over 100,000 tons of apples. The sector's loss of competitiveness –which allowed third countries to enter the Brazilian market–, coupled with a progressive supply of Brazil's own apple production, led to the poor export results there's been in the latest seasons.
The year-on-year improvement observed in the volume of apple exports to Brazil during 2019 was not reflected in the values. According to data provided by the Department of Foreign Trade of the National Institute of Statistics and Census, INDEC, the average FOB value declared by Argentine companies during 2019 was $ 0.78 per kilo, a figure that reflects an almost 18% year-on-year fall.
Decrease in pears
Brazil's demand for Argentine pears slightly decreased during 2019. SENASA statistics show that last year the country only placed a little over 96,000 tons in that destination, i.e. 4% less than in the previous year.
The FOB value records the same trend as in apples. Last year it stood at $0.76 compared to $0.84 per kilo achieved in 2018.