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New Varieties Over Half of Chile’s Table Grape Exports This Season

May 10, 2023

From winter to spring, supermarket shelves in China are filled with fresh table grapes of numerous cultivars with different colors, shapes and flavors. These grapes, coming from Chile in the Southern Hemisphere, have greatly enriched the fruit selection available to Chinese consumers.

As of week 17 of 2023, this season’s total export volume of Chilean table grapes to the world had reached 59.415 million cartons, equivalent to 487,000 metric tons. Although this represents a decrease compared with last season, a clear trend has emerged over the last several years — exports of new grape varieties have been gradually increasing year by year and finally surpassed those of traditional varieties for the first time this year.

Data from the Chilean grape industry reveal that, as of week 17, new grape varieties accounted for 57% of the total export volume, while traditional varieties comprised the remaining 43%. New red, green and black grape cultivars constituted 29%, 21% and 7%, respectively, of the total shipments. During the reporting period, the top 10 new grape varieties collectively made up approximately 50% of the total shipments of new varieties.

Chinese consumers have demonstrated strong interest in these new table grape varieties from Chile. In an interview with Pagoda, China’s fruit chain store giant that operates more than 5,000 shops throughout the country, a representative from the company told Produce Report that they have been paying close attention to new table grape varieties from Chile in recent years. In order to cater to the latest market trends, Pagoda is scheduled to purchase more black table grapes from Chile this year. This one company alone is estimated to have imported 160,000–180,000 cartons of Chilean table grapes this season.

Freshippo (also known as Hema Fresh), the fast-growing supermarket and grocery delivery chain owned by Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba, noted in another interview that up to six varieties of Chilean table grapes were available for purchase in their stores in April. According to the company, sweet and juicy table grapes with a strong fragrance are preferred by Chinese consumers. Since March of this year, Freshippo’s sales of Chilean table grapes have increased by 120% compared with the same period of last year.

As of week 17, the export volume of Chilean table grapes to China had reached 56,717 metric tons, surpassing the total export volume to other countries in Asia. Now, the Chilean table grape sector has successfully concluded its 2022/23 export season. With the expansion of planting areas for new grape varieties, increasing quantities of high-quality and fresh Chilean table grapes are expected to make their way to Chinese consumers in the near future.

Image: Pixabay

This article was translated from Chinese. Read the original article.

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