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Rodolfo Meza, Aztec Fruits:

"Surplus of avocados gave the larger ones from Mexico a chance in Europe"

The Mexican avocado season is gradually winding down. "The supply was good, and prices, especially for the large sizes, remained stable. Last week was the last peak; now things will slowly ease off until the season ends in March," begins Rodolfo Meza of Aztec Fruits, a Mexican producer/exporter group with a sales office in Belgium.

The season was generally excellent, he says. "In Mexico, there was more high-quality fruit than in previous years, and those sold well. Then, considering the problems regarding volumes and size in countries like Morocco, Colombia, and Spain that offered great opportunities for Mexican avocados this season. We took advantage of that, especially with the larger 12-20 sizes."

"The oversupply of smaller sizes from different parts of the world caused their prices to plummet by December; you simply couldn't earn anything from them. We, therefore, decided to focus on the larger sizes, where prices were and still are nice and stable," Rodolfo continues.

Still, things did not go entirely smoothly for Aztec Fruits. "We usually ship a lot of fruit via the United States to Spain. However, there were long delays at the U.S. ports from September to December. So, this season, we decided to focus more on shipping to the ports of Antwerp and Rotterdam. From there, we could still truck the avocados to our Spanish customers too."

Switching to mangos and papayas
Nonetheless, the company's Mexican avocadoes trade has slowed since mid-January. "It's most convenient to ship from Mexico to Europe from September to January. We've been far more cautious since December," says Meza.

"There's a much higher chance of high dry matter content from then until February. So you have to be genuinely careful. We, thus, prefer the fruit from the higher, mountainous regions, which should still arrive in Europe in good condition. There are still plenty of shipments coming in; volumes will just decline until March."

By then, though, Aztec Fruits will begin with Ataulfo mangos and papayas again. "We've started receiving small volumes of those, and they look great. We're especially excited about the papayas. We've already had requests for these products. So, from the first week in February, it's full steam ahead with both the papayas and mangos," Rodolfo concludes.

For more information: 
Rodolfo Meza
Aztec Fruits
62 Interleuvenlaan
3001, Hevrelee, Belgium
Tel: +32 (0) 456 184 982

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