Peruvian blues in pole position
January 28, 2020

With exports of US$810m last year, the country has leapfrogged Chile to become the world’s number one exporter

Peru has overtaken Chile to become the world’s leading exporter of fresh blueberries, with exports of US$810m in 2019 according to agri-export business intelligence company Fresh Fruit Peru.

CEO Luis Corvera said this was 14 per cent more than the US$693m that Chile exported last year.

“Even with these preliminary figures, this means Peru would be the main global supplier of the small purple fruit during 2019,” Corvera said, adding that the achievement was even more remarkable given that Peru did not start exporting the fruit until 2008. Since 2014, Peruvian blueberry exports have been increasing by an average of 50 per cent a year.

The US is the leading destination, absorbing 57 per cent of the export total. During the past five years, shipments to this market have grown by 16 per cent a year on average. In 2019, the US imported 70,634 tonnes of Peruvian blueberries with a value of US$461m, a rise of 77 per cent in volume and 62 per cent in value compared to the previous year.

Shipments to the Netherlands, from which the fruit is re-exported to other European markets, totalled 27,094 tonnes worth US$179m, accounting for 22 per cent of overall exports.

China, the biggest market, absorbed 10 per cent of Peru’s export volume. It is regarded as the market with the greatest potential to develop sales, with demand growing by an average of 40 per cent during the last five years.

In 2019, shipments to China reached 12,258 tonnes with a value of US$87m, an increase of 16 per cent in volume and value on the previous year.