Extended Chilean cherry season to bring extra sales opportunities
Fall has arrived and that means it’s time to get ready for Chilean cherries. Chile projects that cherry exports to the U.S. will see substantial growth in 2021-22, and for the first time the season will run more than 12 weeks, from November through February. The Chilean Cherry Committee estimates that nearly 13,000 tons will be shipped to the U.S. market during the 2021-22 season.
Chile reigns among the world’s largest exporters of cherries, and continued growth is anticipated over the coming years. While China has been the main receiver of Chilean cherries, the industry is working diligently to develop other markets, including the U.S.
“Diversification and development of markets is crucial for our industry," said Cristián Tagle, chairman of the Cherry Committee. "Chile views the U.S. as a market with enormous potential, and we are committed to investing in its expansion.”
To support the increased volumes flowing into the market, the committee will fund an expanded marketing program, encompassing numerous consumer and retail components encouraging consumers to “Cherrish the Moment.” Promotions will begin in December and continue through February, with new merchandising material communicating different occasions for enjoying Chilean cherries.
“Chilean cherries are a delicious addition to just about anything," said Karen Brux, managing director of the Chilean Fresh Fruit Association. "Whether shared with family over the holidays, used in a special dessert for Valentine’s Day, given as a gift for Chinese New Year, or just eaten on the sofa while watching TV — there are so many ways to 'Cherrish the Moment' with Chilean cherries.”
The CFFA’s merchandisers are working with retailers across the country to showcase cherries to their shoppers both in-store and online. Extensive social media and e-commerce programs will provide an additional boost to awareness and shopper demand.
The first shipments of cherries will depart Chile by early November and will continue through early February.