SHAFFE, the Association of Fresh Fruit Exporters of the Southern Hemisphere, held its annual meeting in Asia in early July 2020 to review the evolution of the market for the 2018-19 financial year and, preliminarily, evaluate the impact of Covid-19 on the current export development with Asian trading partners.
Given the continuing state of emergency due to the Covid-19 pandemic, for the first time the meeting was held not during Asia Fruit Logistica, but virtually. SHAFFE countries analyzed the record season of 2019, reaching a new peak of imports in Asian destinations that amounted to 2.6 million tons worth US $ 7,6 billion.
Regarding the Covid-19 pandemic, they noted that it shows a slow decline in import operations due to global logistics restrictions for Q1 / Q2 2020, "but SHAFFE traders look with moderate optimism towards the second half of the year . Although a general and complete image will not be available until the end of the year, ”said the entity in its press release.
The SHAFFE meeting is traditionally devoted to analyzing long-term market developments and trends for fresh fruit from the southern hemisphere in major Asian destinations. In this sense, it was said that 2019 continued to be another record year for world and southern hemisphere exports to Asian markets. "SHAFFE exporters have once again increased exports from 2018 to 2019 by 15% in value and 13% in volume, with 2.6 million tons of tempered fruit exported for more than US $ 7,6 billion" , observed SHAFFE ..
Chile at the helm
SHAFFE highlighted in the statement to Chile, “As the world's leading importer of fruit to Asian destinations, Chile continues its double-digit average growth in 5 years (20%), followed by New Zealand (16%) and Australia. (20%), with all SHAFFE countries currently consolidating their favorable positions in Asian destinations.
According to this association, the main driving force behind the tremendous growth curve continues to be the import markets of China and Hong Kong, which currently amount to 1,8 million tons worth US $ 5,2 billion. Other destinations in the region, such as Japan, Taiwan, and South Korea, show stable development.
Asia's top 15 countries for temperate fruit currently comprise around 10,3 million tons of imported goods in total, worth US $ 19,6 billion, of which about 43% are delivered by intra-Asian trade. and 40% by exporters from the southern hemisphere.
The organization noted that given the continuing impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on global business operations, SHAFFE traders view the current situation with modest optimism, especially with the first signs of recovery in SHAFFE-China trade.
“Although the market experienced a drop of between 15% and 30% for some products, during the acute state of emergency in the months of March and April in Asian export destinations, as well as in the origins of SHAFFE, now shows signs of recovery, "he assured ..
Adding that: “Many SHAFFE merchants have not yet started their export season to Asia. However, some key elements remain challenging, including limited and continued availability of air cargo, port congestion, and other logistical impediments. In addition, many market access negotiations for exports to Asian destinations have been suspended, given the strong focus on Covid-19 crisis management during the first part of the year. "
On the positive side, he commented that “SHAFFE traders welcomed many trade facilitation and dynamic crisis management measures for incoming trade across the Asian region. The SHAFFE secretariat will continue to monitor developments in Q3 and Q4, as a full image will only be available by the end of 2020. "