Pea cultivation faces a global challenge: the balance between global supply and demand is very tight due to the increase in demand from large markets, such as China, and the significant increase in the volumes required in the production of meats.
As revealed in a webinar organized by the Global Pulse Confederation (GPC), India was the main importer of peas up until 2017-2018, a period in which import conditions were changed affecting the country's market condition.
India's spot was extensively covered by China, which had been growing continuously since 2010. Imports from the Asian giant exploded from that period. China went from importing about 600,000 tons in 2013 to an expected more than 2 million tons in the campaign that is ending. In addition, according to projections, its imports will grow by 15% more in the next cycle.
Canada is the world's leading producer and exporter followed by the Black Sea region, the European Union, Asia, and Australia. Argentina plays an important role in the green-pea market but not in the yellow-pea market, which has the largest volume.
Due to the increase in demand from China, if India reappears in the import market there may not be enough supply to cover demand.
In the first four months of the year, the volume imported by China increased by 50% and there aren't many productive territories in the world with the potential to expand the production of peas like Argentina.
Thanks to the endorsement of the Chinese Government, Argentina could rapidly increase the 110,000 tons (65,000 exported) it produced last year by 20% in 2020.
According to specialists' estimates, the country has the potential to increase its production to the point of being able to send at least 100,000 tons to China in the short term, a figure equivalent to just 5% of its imports.
Argentina has some 60,000 hectares of yellow pea, an area that could be doubled without problems within three years.