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Peru avocado shipments to the U.S. smash previous record

By
Tim Linden

By early-August, Peru had shipped nearly 200 million pounds of avocados to the U.S. market with the expectation that it would ship another 100 million pounds during the final two months of its season, smashing its previous record by nearly 50 percent.

“The most important thing that has occurred this year is the increasing presence of Peru in the U.S. market,” said Xavier Equihua, president of the Peruvian Avocado Commission. “This is the promise of what is yet to come. Peru can ship up to a half billion pounds of avocados to the United States in the coming years.”

If shipments do approach the 300-million-pound milestone, that will represent about 14 percent of the expected 2022 U.S. consumption — and a much higher percentage when Peru is in the marketplace. “We accomplish that in a condensed time frame,” he said. “Most of our fruit comes into the market during the summer months. From week 20 to week 32, we had consistently good volume. We were the leading supplier in several of those weeks.”

Equihua believes Peru’s volume and promotional activities are a big plus for the avocado category as a whole in the United States as they help keep the increasingly popular fruit in the spotlight year-round. Combined with the promotions conducted by other avocado origins he said avocados get promotional support 365 days a year.

“We are the only origin supporting avocados with such a robust program during the summer,” he said. “From June through September we are promoting avocados with a plethora of in-and-out of store tactics.”

One of Peru’s most visible promotions this season has been its 2022 AVO Tesla Summer Sweepstakes. Launched in partnership with several retailers, the sweepstakes promotes Peru’s key message to Eat Healthy, Live and Drive Green. The AVO Tesla campaign has been building all summer and will finish by the end of August with the awarding of the two ultimate green vehicles to two lucky consumers. The AVO Tesla campaign has been so successful that PAC will repeat it and expand it next year with the addition of the AVO Ford Lightning Pick-up Truck as an additional giveaway.

Peru is still expected to provide solid volumes through September, Equihua said, adding that Avocados from Peru will continue promotional activities all summer long ending in September with a robust in-store and media advertising campaign. The record increase in volume indicates that Peruvian avocados have increased their footprint in the U.S. market and broadened their promotional reach. “Last year we promoted in 30 markets and this year we have expanded that to 90 markets,” he said. “That speaks for itself.”

Looking toward next season, PAC’s chief executive said the future is bright for Peruvian avocados. “There is no reason we shouldn’t be able to build on what we have done this year and at least ship 300 million pounds again next season.”

Tim Linden

Tim Linden

About Tim Linden  |  email

Tim Linden grew up in a produce family as both his father and grandfather spent their business careers on the wholesale terminal markets in San Francisco and Los Angeles.

Tim graduated from San Diego State University in 1974 with a degree in journalism. Shortly thereafter he began his career at The Packer where he stayed for eight years, leaving in 1983 to join Western Growers as editor of its monthly magazine. In 1986, Tim launched Champ Publishing as an agricultural publishing specialty company.

Today he is a contract publisher for several trade associations and writes extensively on all aspects of the produce business. He began writing for The Produce News in 1997, and currently wears the title of Editor at Large.

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