The supply of avocados from Spain, Israel and Chile are in the later stages of the season and arrivals from Peru and South Africa are now starting to increase.
The volumes from Spain were smaller this season as was the fruit size. “There was 30-40% less from Spain. This was caused by a bumper harvest and late finish the previous season, leading to late flowering and volumes were also hampered by drought and water restrictions in the summer months,” according to Mark Everett, Business Unit Director – Avocados at Worldwide Fruit. “A mix of origins kept the retail demand supplied.”
Avocados from the early South African producers are starting to arrive in the UK as are those from Peru. Peruvian growers have had to contend with a lot so far this year: unrest leading to riots, roadblocks etc. and last week they were hit by cyclone Yaku which brought heavy rain causing flooding and landslides and other damage to infrastructure. South Africa has also had its problems with cyclone Freddy causing heavy rain in the growing regions.
“Peru will recover from this disruption and volumes are expected to be up this season, mainly due to new plantings. The extra volumes will go to different markets around the world with around 7% more expected to go to Europe. South Africa have estimated 18 million 4kg export cartons this season.”
Figures from Kantar Worldpanel show that in the 12 weeks ending 19 February this year the retail value of avocados grew by 6.6% in the UK. Ripened avocados remained resilient with some of the increase most likely down to price inflation.
The cost-of-living crisis does not seem to have affected demand in the UK, despite avocados being seen as a luxury item, sales volumes have remained consistent.
“This is probably because the people who regularly buy avocados appreciate the versatility of the product and superfood status, but we are seeing that the value ranges are selling well as people are shopping more at the discounters.”
Worldwide Fruit also sell into wholesale with premium branded ripened avocados “The top restaurants still seem busy and sales are going well.”
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