HomeNewsMorocco triples blueberry exports to Southeast Asia in past 5 years, on track for a new record!
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Morocco triples blueberry exports to Southeast Asia in past 5 years, on track for a new record!

In 2023, Morocco emerged as the fifth largest supplier of fresh blueberries to Southeast Asian countries, increasing its export volumes by 3.3 times since 2019, according to EastFruit. The current pace of Moroccan exports indicates further expansion in this market.

In 2023, Morocco supplied 1,500 tons of fresh blueberries to Southeast Asia, compared to just over 450 tons in 2019. In the first four months of this year alone, Moroccan exporters shipped nearly 1,300 tons of blueberries to the region.

 

“Hong Kong is the primary market for fresh blueberries in Southeast Asia, consistently ranking among the top ten global importers of this berry. Other countries in the region import significantly less than Hong Kong but are rapidly increasing their purchase volumes. For instance, from 2019 to 2023, Singapore and Malaysia increased their blueberry imports by 50%, while Thailand more than doubled its imports,” commented Yevhen Kuzin, Fruit & Vegetable Market Analyst at EastFruit.

 

Meanwhile, Hong Kong, the leading importer in Southeast Asia, significantly reduced its fresh blueberry imports in 2022-2023, dropping to the 2019 level of just over 15,000 tons.

 

Read also: Moroccan fresh berry exports surge to new heights again

 

“The decline in blueberry imports in Hong Kong is due to several factors. Firstly, the main reason was the poor harvest in Peru, the world’s leading blueberry exporter. Secondly, Hong Kong’s economy has faced significant challenges in recent years, including a political crisis with mainland China, the COVID-19 pandemic, and global food inflation. Thirdly, China is actively increasing its production of blueberries for the fresh market, partially replacing imports and aiming for export,” explained Yevhen Kuzin.

In 2019, China, the world’s largest blueberry producer, exported only 19 tons of blueberries to Southeast Asia. Five years later, this figure reached 680 tons, and in January-April of this year, over 800 tons of fresh blueberries were imported from China to the region. Notably, China competes with Moroccan blueberry supplies in Southeast Asia, and in April 2024, Chinese exports slightly exceeded Moroccan exports (410 tons versus 390 tons).

“To maintain its leading position in the global blueberry export market, Morocco should focus on finding viable alternatives to traditional markets such as the EU and the UK. Southeast Asia, as current trends suggest, can become an excellent addition to Morocco’s export structure, especially given that the region’s economic growth rates (excluding Hong Kong) are projected to be the second fastest in the world after India. Naturally, competition will intensify, particularly from China, but focusing on the premium segment can help offset the growing volumes of Chinese exports,” concluded Yevhen Kuzin.

EastFruit

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