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Peru: Six products will help consolidate agricultural exports

Peruvian agricultural exports will continue to quietly consolidate over the next five years. The Association of Agricultural Producers Guild of Peru (AGAP), stated on Tuesday that the consolidation would be led by six established fresh products: asparagus, avocado, mango, blueberries, grapes, and tangerines. 

Despite a drop in performance, caused by the aging of traditional production areas, such as Ica, asparagus production will continue to expand. Carlos Zamorano, the manager of the Peruvian Institute of Asparagus and Vegetables, said that, if the water availability in the region were to be increased, they could plant 30,000 to 50,000 new hectares.

The planting of this crop would be encouraged by the good prices it has in the market and the elimination of the fumigation treatment that the asparagus was required to undergo when entering the United States, its main market. 

Nearly 10,000 hectares of avocado in the Olmos irrigation project in Lambayeque are expected to start producing soon. According to Victor Escobedo, the technical manager of ProHass, both the growth in demand in Europe and the opening of the Chinese and Japanese markets will promote investment in this product.
Meanwhile, the mango's planted area should double if its transit time to Asia decreases (it takes 30 days to arrive to this destination by boat), said Juan Rivera, of the Association of Mango Exporters (APEM). The start of operations of China Eastern Airlines in the country would facilitate the growth of the mango sector, as air freight is expected decrease when compared to regular flights, he said. 

Table grape production, which up until now has been focused on the Red Globe variety, that is considered an agricultural commodity, will move into seedless varieties. The Association of Producers of Table Grape Peru (Provid) predicts that the varietal change will boost the development of projects with larger areas, as the seedless varieties have a lower yield.

Meanwhile, production of mandarins, which represents 90% of citrus exports, would increase because of the enablement of irrigation on the coast. According to Procitrus, the new citrus border will be in Chavimochic (where its viable to grow the fruit) and in Majes Siguas.

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Blueberries, which are currently Peru's star agricultural export, could reach 10,000 hectares in five years, said Federico Beltran, the manager of Terra Business SAC. According to him, prices will moderate and producers will opt for varietal differentiation. 

Carlos Gereda, the manager of the Inka's Berries nursery, said there was potential for cherry crops in 7,000 hectares. If producers find a suitable variety, they could plant cherries on the coast to harvest in the counter season for export to China, which has a demand for this fruit.

There are good expectations for pomegranates, as the US market was opened for exports of this fruit in fresh this year. Progranada projects that the Korean and Chinese markets will be opened for this fruit in the next two years.

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