Walter Masman, an agronomist from the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile (PUCV), a technical advisor and consultant specializing in cherry trees, has been looking at the problems and difficulties that the Chilean cherry industry has gone through in recent years and outlined the future prospects for the industry to continue leading.
Masman referred to the problems experienced in recent seasons, mainly caused by the fake news related to Covid-19 in China and the virus search protocols in the 2020/21 season. He pointed to the fact that January 21 was a "Black Thursday for the Chilean cherry", due to the spread of false news in the Chinese social networks, which claimed to have found traces of Covid-19 in national fruit containers.
There were five days in which sales plummeted and prices fell sharply. According to estimates, almost 1.500 containers were not sold in those five days and according to surveys, it is estimated that 70% of consumers stopped buying cherries, mainly because they were reluctant to take any type of risk to their health.
Then in the 2021/22 season, the challenges have continued to be related to the pandemic protocols, adding the logistical difficulties caused by freight and transportation.