Price last week: 35 dollars per kilo

Chilean cherries late to Europe, China pays top price

The Chilean cherry season has started. No volumes have arrived in Europe yet, "The season usually starts around November 15th, but this year it will be more than a week later," says Jacques Mayol from Mayol import company located in Brussels. Due to the El Niño weather conditions, shipments have been delayed and there will be less volume this year. Also, China is playing an increasingly important role in Chilean export."

High prices for China
Jacques expects the first volumes to arrive in approximately ten days, "The first shipment will probably arrive at the end of next week," he says. "Last week small volumes were sent to China from Chile. The prices are extremely high there. In Shanghai the cherries are selling for 150 to 180 dollars per 5 kilo box, more than 35 dollars per kilo. Europe would not pay that much. Here we usually start with 15 Euro per kilo." Jacques says that the export to China from Chile is increasing annually, "The largest volume is destined for China, and then the U.S. Now that the harvest is smaller this year, Europe will receive less."

Jacques Mayol two years ago in the European Center in Brussels.

More volumes to come
According to Jacques, China has many alternatives to Europe, "But I do not think that Europe will receive nothing in the future. You hear some people saying it, but that is not realistic. Large volumes of many different kinds of fruit are planted. In addition, China's growth potential is not yet completely clear to Chile. This is why Chile will continue to distribute its products to many different parts of the world. When there is a year with large volumes, fruit will be sent to Europe."

Evaluating weekly
For the Chilean season, "It is difficult to predict what will happen because they expect rain in the coming weeks. The prediction was that there would be much more fruit than last year, but El Niño changed things. This means we have to evaluate the impact on a week by week basis. Yesterday I spoke with one of my suppliers and he said that in every region they predict less than what was originally estimated for the year. The volumes of many other fruits are also smaller this season. It is too early to say anything about grapes, apples and pears, but there will be less stonefruit harvested."

For more information:
Jacques Mayol S.A.
Quai des Usines 112-154
1000 Bruxelles
Tel: +32-27850295
Fax: +32-27850292
GSM: +32-475283025

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