Peruvian blueberries arrive in the United Kingdom by sea

As the citrus season of Peru is coming to an end, blueberries begin to arrive and grapes are on the way. FreshPlaza has spoken with Rob Cullum, of Pacific Produce, to review the various seasons.


Cullum expects to have three more weeks of citrus arrivals from Peru, especially Nadorcott, and also some Honey tangerines. “We have gone from 500 tons to 300 tons per week in the last three weeks, and that will conclude what has been a medium volume season.”

“Most people will talk about a good citrus season because they have a range that includes South African citrus, and because of the weak currency, the South Africans have had a very easy season from that perspective. If we export from Peru, we rely on the dollar, so it has been much more difficult for us to compete against them"explains Cullum.

“We mainly sell citrus that are easy to peel. The Satsuma season has had a hard time getting started, as the Nadorcott has lasted longer and it was entering a relatively full market, although from the middle of the season it was relatively good. The Nadorcotts have done very well, the fruit was sold as soon as it arrived, to which its good eating quality has contributed."


The first container from Peru arrived at Pacific Produce last week and Cullum indicates that what sets them apart is that they ship by sea to Europe, while other exporters in the southern hemisphere do so by air. “This week we have another container and we expect one or two a week for the rest of the season. When the Peruvian blueberries begin, we enter the market with good quality, firm new season blueberries, while the blueberries from the northern hemisphere reach the end of their season and are already beginning to lose quality. It can be difficult to achieve optimal prices in the first few weeks, since the fruit from the northern hemisphere is sold at a low price. Most of the shipments so far have gone to North America, as the market there is very short. Over the next few weeks we intend to increase the volumes and right now we are planting a lot."


Theoretically, Peru can produce the twelve months of the year, but Cullum clarifies that they will not. Although most of the production will go to this window, from August to November, they will continue from December to March, but with a lower volume.

Given that plantations are increasing in South Africa, Cullum recognizes that everything will be reduced to who is more efficient when it comes to extracting the product, and this will have to do with the volumes and with the precision of the programming. “The South African blueberries have just arrived, but by air, while Peru arrives with fruit transported by sea. Having said this, global consumption continues to have a strong upward trend and there is room for everyone in the market; We also have the Chinese and North American markets. At some point, prices will go down, which will push consumption up even more.”



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