Fresh blueberries are continuing to gain traction with young consumers in China, who view them as a convenient and healthy snack option. In fact, blueberries have even developed an online nickname, “lan pengyou,” which translates as “blue friends.”
With the October to April Chilean blueberry season in China at its peak in January and February, the Chilean Blueberry Committee of the Chilean Fruit Exporters Association (ASOEX) has been hard at work to capitalize on the popularity of blueberries among this young and tech-savvy demographic. One important aspect of this effort is widespread cooperation with social media influencers covering topics such as food, parenting and lifestyle to tell stories about #BlueberriesFromChile.
In words and photos, these influencers are focusing on the natural flavor and rich nutritional value of Chilean blueberries while funneling consumers toward purchasing online through JD.com and other e-commerce platforms. Posts about Chilean blueberries have attracted more than 50 million views and 26,000 comments on the Sina Weibo microblogging platform this season.
According to data from the Chilean Blueberry Committee, by the end of week 6, Chilean blueberry exports for the season stood at 99,842 tons. Although the peak of weekly export volumes from Chile has now passed, Chilean blueberries continue to arrive in the China market.
Owing to Chile’s relatively high export volume to Asian markets at the beginning of the season, Asia has become comparatively more important as a destination for Chilean blueberries, accounting for 11% of the total export volume. The total amount of blueberries shipped to the Chinese market has reached 6,607 tons, accounting for 6.6% of Chile’s total exports and exceeding the volume for the entire 2020/21 season.