Mexican mango imports are now taking center stage for U.S. markets, while the imported pineapple season from Costa Rica is starting out with flying colors.
While increased mango volume from Peru was seen December and January, Mexican volume started in late January and now is closing in on 1 million mango boxes per week.
During 2017 Mexican mango volume exported to the United States hit a record at 80 million cases. In fact, Mexico accounts for 62 percent of the mangos exported to the U.S.
Mexican mango exports have increased from 59 million in 2014, to 80 million cases last year.
There was a drop in Mexican exports from 2013, when a then-record 70 million cases were shipped to the U.S. However, there was increased Mexican mango volume each year for at least 10 years, with 40 million cases shipped in 2004.
A total of 23 Mexican states produce mango, with about 25 percent of Mexico’s mango crop being exported fresh.
Strong supplies of imported pineapples are seen through the first half of 2018. Dole Food Co., Westlake Village, CA is a leading importer of the tropical fruit. Costa Rica provides about 80 percent of pineapples in the U.S. as the first half of the year looks better than recent few years. A normal dip in Costa Rican volumes is expected in the late summer and early fall with volumes returning in the fourth quarter. Mexico also is expected to have good supplies, although volume to the U.S. is much less than with Costa Rica.
Over the last four years, cut pineapple has grown much faster than bulk in the U.S.
As recently as 1991, Hawaii provided half of the total U.S. fresh pineapple supply. That year, total supply of fresh pineapple totaled 503 million pounds, of which Hawaii accounted for 250 million pounds and imports provided 254 million pounds.
Fast-forward to 2006 and Hawaii supplied only 192 million pounds of fresh pineapples and import volume ballooned to 1.4 billion pounds.
By 2015, Hawaii’s contribution to the fresh pineapple supply disappeared altogether, while imports supplied all the fresh pineapple supply of 2.3 billion pounds. Hawaii’s demise in the pineapple industry was primarily due to high costs of operation, compared to other areas around the world..