Frutas y HortalizasSep. 21, 2011
Importación creció 48% entre enero y agosto, alcanzando 50.800 toneladas
With a strong currency (Real) and a loss in harvest quality in 2011 due to hail, more apples are being imported to the national market. According to the Secretary of External Commerce (Secex), from January to August, the amount of imported apple has risen by 47.7%, reaching 50,800 tons.
According to the president of the Brazilian Association of Apple Producers (ABPM), Pierre Pérès, Argentina is the main origin. According to Secex, this country exported about 40,100 tons of fruit to Brazil in the last eight months, corresponding to 79% of all the imports in that period.
According to a research about family budgets, made by IBGE, in 2002 apple consumption per capita was of 1.68 kilos. In 2008 it grew to 2.15 kilos per capita, a rise of 28% in six years. Entity’s evaluation says that consumption tends to rise for 2011 due to pressure on the market by the fruit offer.
Pérès says that the Argentinian apple reaches a final cost of about R$45 per box in Brazil, while national fruit costs R$36. According to the leader, what really damages the market is the arrival of lower quality fruit costing around R$30.
According to Evanir Almeirda, commercial director for “Renar Maçãs”, despite the rise in the harvest, hail lowered its quality, originating a drop in the average price between 5% and 6%. For the executive, importing is not so bad for Renar’s business as Brazil doesn’t have a fruit consumption habit like Argentina.
Despite being red and shiny, the taste of the “brother” apple is less sour and has a more porous skin than the national one. Here, the most popular varieties are Fuji and Gala. “The price of import fruit is not directly influenced by the on going value in market”, Almeida said.
For Sanjo, from São Joaquim (SC), weather conditions forced a drop to 40,000 tons on this year’s harvest, after 43,000 tons in 2010. Hail reduced about 7% of it and the turnover for producers of this cooperative was reduced in R$4 million, according to the press.
On “Agrícola Friaburgo”, there was a 7% impact on production. The company diversified orchards in four different areas – São Joaquim, Vacaria, Fraiburgo and Urupema – to minimize the weather effects. They got about 30,000 tons at the end, moving 60,000 tons with the harvest of associated farmers.
Despite hail damaging this year’s harvest, the president of the association says that currency exchange is the factor that benefits fruit imports. The added value of the Real also damaged the export of Brazilian fruits to the European market, one of its main destinations.
“The European market has been retracting these last two years, but at the moment, Chilean and Argentinian producers are having it good there”, as affirmed by Ricardo Burchardt, commercial supervisor for “Agrícola Fraiburgo”. According to Secex, the amount of exported apple, in the first 8 months of this year had a 53% drop regarding the same period of 2010, reaching only 48,700 tons.
The president of ABPM, Pierre Pérès, also has questions about the control system by the Ministry of Agriculture of Argentina. According to him, vigilance by the neighbouring country, with control points in Mendoza and Rio Negro, is only done in the border areas. “In many cases, they just open the back of the truck and checked only part of the cargo”, he added.
Through the press department, the Ministry of Agriculture informed that there were changes to the SMR (Integrated System of Health Plan Measure to End Risks) for Cydia Pomonella on apple, pear and quince cultures from Argentina. With that, Brazilian control is restricted to the territory of Argentina and only made twice a year, by technicians of the Vegetable Health Department. According to the Ministry, there’s no need for Brazil having offices there.