The Magnit chain, one of the leading retailers in the Russian grocery retail market, doubled the imports of fruits and vegetables from Uzbekistan in 11 months of 2022 compared to the same period last year, EastFruit experts report.
According to the retailer, the total fruit and vegetable supplies from Uzbekistan to Magnit stores in January-November 2022 exceeded 3.5 billion RUB ($54.4 million at the current exchange rate). For instance, compared to the same period last year, imports of persimmons almost doubled, grapes more than doubled, and plums tripled. The structure of imports this year has expanded due to new product categories and varieties: pomegranate, lemon, peach, plum, and pumpkin. In addition, the Magnit chain started importing nuts and semi-finished goods from Uzbekistan.
The seasonality factor affects the supply of fruit and vegetables. Peak months are October and November, which account for almost 40% of annual imports from Uzbekistan. The key positions for imports in this period are grapes and persimmons. About a third of the annual volume is supplied in summer – this is the season of stone fruits (cherries, nectarines, peaches, plums) and melons, as well as the beginning of the grape ripening season, the article on the company’s website says.
Working with Uzbek suppliers was facilitated by the opening of a commercial procurement office in Tashkent. Specialists compensated for the reduction in the supply of fresh fruit and optimized the delivery time, said Magnit’s director for retail purchases.
In 2017, Magnit signed a contract for the supply of fruits and vegetables with “Uzbekozikovkatholding”. It was noted then that Uzbek apricots, grapes, melons, peaches, persimmons, and cherries are most in demand in Russia.
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