Durian sales have entered peak season, and prices of high-quality durians are holding steady

Durians have always been one of the most popular imported fruit categories for Chinese consumers. Demand for durians in China has been surging.

After entering May, the durian supply entered the peak season, the total supply in the market increased, and consumer demand also increased. According to market dealers, the current price of durian is based on quality, origin, and variety. The price of high-end durian is firm, while the price of low-end durian is falling.

The main reason is that the supply of durians in the eastern part of Thailand has decreased, and the southern production areas have not yet started to supply durians in large quantities. The purchase price in the eastern production areas continues to rise, which will drive up the price in China. After entering July, a large number of durians in southern Thailand will go on the market. The taste and quality of durians in the south are slightly inferior to those in the east, and the price is expected to drop.

In recent years, Southeast Asia and other major durian-producing countries have aimed at China's huge consumer market, constantly catering to the needs of Chinese consumers, and have exported durians into China to gain market share. Before 2022, Thailand was the only country that could export frozen and fresh durians to China, because fresh durian has stricter transportation and storage conditions than frozen durian. Southeast Asian countries such as Malaysia, Vietnam, and Cambodia export durian to China only in frozen form. China is also adjusting its import structure to diversify its sources.

In July 2022, the import of Vietnamese fresh durians that met the requirements of China was approved, and in January 2023 importing durians from the Philippines was approved. The sources have been further expanded, changing from a single channel in the past. With the approval of durians from Vietnam and the Philippines, the supply capacity of durians in the Chinese market has increased, and fresh durians can basically be supplied throughout the year.

In the short term, Vietnam will be more competitive than Thailand in terms of low transportation costs, logistics time, and low prices. However, Vietnam is far behind Thailand in terms of customs clearance convenience, product quality, and supply chain construction.

The production scale of durian in the Philippines is also far inferior to that of Thailand and Vietnam. In addition, the industrialization of durian exports in the Philippines is not as good as that of Thailand and Vietnam. In this competition for China's market share, Thai durian's dominant position in China will be difficult to shake in a short period of time. In the long run, whoever can offer the advantages of quality and cost performance will be able to take a bigger piece of the cake in China.

Source: China Fruit Marketing Association

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