Being a non-essential item, chestnuts are not tied to rigid market demand. The chestnut industry has been significantly damaged during the COVID-19 breakout. We learned from Qinhuangdao Yanshan Chestnut Co. Ltd. that the company has resumed production but movement is still slow.
"In terms of domestic sales, the peak season for roasting chestnuts has passed, and current available products on the market are mainly bagged fresh chestnuts. On the whole, the Chinese market has been weak recently with insufficient consumer drive. Especially, as Chestnut is not a necessity, there is no rigid market demand for it. Due to the breakout, many stores, pedestrian streets, and shopping malls have been closed. Some stores have not even been fully open now. As a result, the sales volume of our offline retail channels has fallen sharply. Comparatively, our e-commerce sales have been slightly better, but the timeliness of delivery has been affected due to the shortage of couriers and road blockages. For some customers, we had to delay deliveries or provide compensation-guaranteed services. Currently, With the exception of Hubei Province and certain regions, the logistics has basically returned to normal, and the goods we ship are able reach our clients on time. The current price of fresh chestnuts in China is 9-9.5 yuan/half a kilo , 20-30% lower than that before the Chinese New Year." The China Market Manager of the company said in an interview.
Regarding the export market, Ms. Dong, Manager of the Export department of the company said, "After we resumed business, we were immediately hit by the outbreak overseas, so some orders had to be temporarily put on hold or delayed. In general, compared with previous years, our export volume of raw chestnuts has dropped by about 50%. At present, most of our exports are sent to Japan, Southeast Asia, Hong Kong, and Taiwan. The order volume in these markets is in general unaffected, and the movement has basically been normal, but we can’t rule out the possibility of the export volume being lowered in the future. "
“The price of each market varies greatly, but overall, export prices are slightly higher than the same period last year. This is because the products currently exported were purchased last year, so the current market price is determined by the high purchase price last year. In view of the recent economic situation in overseas markets, we are also considering offering discounts for new customers." The Manager said, “The current stocks of fresh chestnuts are slightly higher than the same period last year. In order to digest the stocks as fast as we can, we also plan to process fresh products into other chestnut products. "
"Affected by the outbreak, all of our planned trade shows in the first half of the year have been postponed or cancelled, which significantly affected our customer development and sales plans. In particular, new orders in overseas markets have fallen sharply." Dong said.
Qinhuangdao Yanshan Chestnut Co., Ltd. is a professional chestnut processor that exports about 1,000 tons of chestnuts each year.