The melon harvest this year encourages producers of Rio Grande do Norte (Brazil). The drought did not affect the development of fruits and foreign sales are expanding.
The largest melon farm, located between Rio Grande do Norte and Ceará, has 6500 hectares of fruit, which is harvested and shipped to Europe. About 300 containers are shipped to overseas markets a week.
According to the Fruit Committee of Rio Grande do Norte, the melon harvest this year in the state is 15% higher compared to that of 2011, which benefits producers who manage to sell 10 kilos box for export at an average price of R$ 17, the same price as last year.
Producers will increase their production this year having in mind new international markets with which they have closed agreements, such as Turkey, Singapore, Hong Kong, United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia.
Moreover, the fruit growers of Rio Grande do Norte will begin talks with the U.S. government to export the fruit to that country. Today, there is an import tax, levied by the Americans, for fruit entering their country between April and November. From December to March, the producers are exempt from taxes. Brazilian producers want the United States to anticipate that exemption period so to be between the months of September and February; period when Brazil has its largest harvest.