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Ukrainian blueberries continue their expansion in the EU

Ukrainian blueberries increased their presence on European shelves and maintained a better price than last year in the domestic market of Ukraine. The President of the Ukrainian Horticulture Association (UHA) Taras Bashtannik, spoke about this in a SEEDS commentary.

“If we break it down into main crops, blueberries were exported significantly more this year. This is the merit of the largest Ukrainian manufacturers and exporters. This increased the presence of Ukrainian blueberries on European shelves and kept a good price 20% higher than last year in the domestic market of Ukraine, as the market was a little freed up for smaller and medium-sized producers and those who are not exporting.

The market has changed for the worse regarding the price of raspberries, but this has nothing to do with the war. This is due to the expected planned overproduction of the raspberry market, which we have observed over the past two or three years. Therefore, this was all-natural,” says Taras Bashtannik.  In his opinion, business did not change much during the second year of the war. At least it hasn’t changed for the worse. All factors present in the market were determined precisely by the market and not by war.

Read also: Blueberries of Ukraine: in-depth analyses of prices, production, and export trends in 2023

“The raspberry market was predicted to have low prices. There is nothing new or surprising here. Next year, there should be a certain adjustment towards higher prices for raspberries, but not significantly: 15-20% no more.

Regarding blueberries, I think that Ukraine will continue to increase its presence with Europe in the world regarding exports, so it seems to me that the blueberry market can be expected at this year’s level. At least this is an optimistic, good scenario,” the president of the UHA is convinced.

The situation was completely different this season with strawberries, which received significant adjustments from the Kherson region.

“For strawberries, the market has traditionally been lively and active, but the export market has not been lively and active, as has been the case for quite a few years because there is high competition from frozen strawberries from Egypt, Morocco, and Tunisia. Therefore, it is almost impossible for Ukrainian producers to compete there.

Therefore, the only question is to offer the berries to the fresh market. But after the situation, I hope temporarily, with Kherson, the market for fresh strawberries is not so oversaturated. I don’t know what will happen during the season regarding storing fresh fruits and frozen berries. One can only guess what will happen with the electricity supply. Still, I am sure that Ukrainian farmers will be more prepared for possible power outages,” predicts Taras Bashtannik.

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