Argentina gears up for first blueberry shipments in September
August 28, 2014

Argentina’s blueberry industry is gearing up to deliver its first shipments of the season to the U.S. and Europe, with a slight increase in production expected depending on the weather. 30-blueberries-JA

Although the country starts harvesting the fruit in August, it only begins international trade in September when domestic supply in the two Northern Hemisphere markets begins to dwindle.

Argentinean Blueberry Committee manager Ines Pelaez said having availability from September played a key role in helping importers enjoy a year-round supply of a high-quality fruit.

“Our blueberries are grown in a completely natural habitat, with a mild climate and good soils with natural ventilation and drainage,” Pelaez said in a release.

“The natural conditions in our country favor the optimum growth and development of the plants, and are precisely handled by professionals.”

Argentina has had a steady volume over the last couple of years with around 15,000 metric tons (MT) of blueberries annually, but Pelaez said that figure could see an increase this season.

“We might be able to reach around 16,000MT or even 16,500MT if the weather is favorable and there aren’t any abnormal situations to deal with, but we expect to deliver final estimates at the beginning of week 36 with our first Pre Season report,” she said.

“The export volumes from September through November will make up 90% of our total shipments, with 15,000MT in those months and the rest in December.”

The Argentine blueberry industry is also continuing its varietal replacement process, and claims this gives it a differential advantage over new competitors today who are still experimenting with cultivars and will need time to determine which approach is best suited to the soil and climatic conditions.


Fresh Fruit Portal