Early El Niño effects on Peruvian mangoes with some mandarin and blueberry harvest delays

The warmer winter temperatures in Peru, which are assumed to be early signs of the El Niño weather phenomenon that is affecting the flowering of mangoes, is causing some delays in the harvesting of citrus and blueberries. “The December mango harvest is seriously compromised. Consequently the arrivals of January to Europe will be minimal,” warns Milton Calle, Director of Exotic's Producers & Packers SAC in Peru.

“The warmer weather also continues to affect the sensitive flowering of Peru’s mango industry in the main production area of Piura with less than 1% flowering that is estimated at the valley level in June. As a consequence, there will be zero fruit in November and almost no arrivals in December for the European market. In July, trees are expected to respond to the June chemical inductions but so far the results have been negative. The weather conditions have improved a little, the minimum temperatures in the last week of June were around 19 degrees Celsius, while the maximum temperatures were around 32 degrees Celsius. The first vegetative shoots have been observed and some erratic flowering in isolated farms has been observed too, but due to the condition of the buds, a response is expected at the end of July," explains Calle.

Confirming the experience of Calle is a large grower and exporter of blueberries, citrus, avocados and white asparagus, with farms located in the Viru region of La Libertad, Peru, with over 1 000 hectares. He commented that the warmer weather has affected and delayed their mandarin and blueberry harvests. “The season of mandarins is delayed because of the warm weather with the coloration of the fruit that has been impacted with a four to five weeks delay in harvest. The warm weather also affected the early blueberries, which are a bit delayed too. Flowering in some varieties like Ventura is delayed and it looks like we will have a longer than expected season for Peru, but we will see.”

The exporter said despite the early delay, it is not stopping them from sending blueberries to markets. “Demand for blueberries is satisfactory because there is not that offer this early in the season, while we are focusing on airfreight with prices that are acceptable, which could vary per destination, variety and size. The problem is the declared El Niño, which is imminent in the region with warmer days and nights that will be higher than the normal temperature in the autumn and winter seasons.”

For more information:
Milton Calle
Exotic Producers and Packers S.A.C.
Email: mcallecosechasegura@gmail.com

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