Blueberry output and consumption are still rising. This is despite the unfavorable weather in some countries and the rising production expenses that are being felt worldwide. The biggest producer of blueberries worldwide is still China. It surpassed North America in 2019.
Certain nations have had a labor shortage. This has caused some U.K. growers to start their harvest later than usual. A water crisis is expected in Italy, and heavy rains and floods in Australia have cost growers 10% of their harvest there. Since the nation experienced a challenging season in 2021, a dispute has arisen in South Africa about the country’s declining blueberry crop yields. Even though these issues persist, demand for the well-liked berry is still rising. Let us discuss blueberry shortages in this article.
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What affects the blueberry movement?
There were some issues with blueberry supplies in North America in 2022. Ryan Lockman is the vice president of sales and procurement for Traverse City. He said, “The Chilean volume is less than in past years, which results from labor shortages and a greater processing price.” Also, there were more stable prices in the European market compared to the U.S. market.
Due to those labor concerns, Chilean supplies are reduced. But North Bay’s Peruvian blueberries have seen some slight volume gains. Lockman continues, “But it won’t stabilize the market.” Together with those two nations, the fruit was being shipped from Argentina, Uruguay, and Mexico.
Blueberry Shortages 2023
The quantity of blueberries this year in Europe is quite low. Harro van Dam of Carsol Europe in the Netherlands says, “It’s a perfect storm.” The harvest in Morocco, Portugal, and Spain is well behind schedule. This is due to the weather, while the Chilean season finished earlier than usual. This is a very uncommon scenario because neither market option exists.
Morocco has seen weeks of colder weather than is typical for the season. The same is true in Portugal, where there are farms, and to a lesser extent in Spain, where the season also begins a little later. Despite the forecast of slightly improved weather, Portugal will continue to be gloomy.
In Chile, the season was hastened by good temperatures. However, because of the heat wave, the season also ended earlier. Hence, the season reached its height much earlier than typical. The decision to ship only the best-quality produce resulted in the recent high prices for Chilean berries.
The price of loose Portuguese berries is likewise between $10 and $11. But the high prices are preventing sales. Due to a scarcity of inventory, several supermarkets had to suspend their discounts. The main concern is how the season will develop. Although there is no chance of the market recovering, the plants will soon start producing in large amounts. The next concern is: Will everything come at once? The exceptional quality of the Portuguese berries this season is a plus. That gives us great hope.
What happened to blueberry production in the U.S.?
Blueberries will be difficult to come by on the U.S. West Coast, in part. This was because of the timing of the California blueberry contract. ” The California program began sooner than usual and is wrapping up earlier. They harvested a lot of fruit and had various promotions since they had favorable growing conditions. California lasts until June 2022 before switching to Oregon. And that simply isn’t taking place.
In 2022, the shortage of supplies was partly due to California’s production timing. But the Pacific Northwest blueberries from British Columbia, Oregon, and Washington are arriving later. This has a bigger effect on the market. Due to the extremely cool spring in the Pacific Northwest, all trade through those locations is a little behind schedule. As a result, volumes are smaller.
Demand for blueberries is predicted to stay high. The quantity of summer blueberries won’t be an exception to the rising demand for blueberries, which we expect to continue.
More blueberries are predicted to go through Texas, California, and Arizona. Prices were almost constant during a mild trading day. According to reports, quality varies. It is also predicted that as harvesting grows, Chile’s imports of blueberries through various ports of entry on the east and west coasts will rise.
As more growers complete the season, the amount of blueberry imports from Peru through the ports of entry in the Philadelphia and New York City region is expected to decline. Prices remained constant despite a moderate amount of trading.