Raisin - Fruit Report

An Expert's View about Horticulture and Support Services in Chile

Last updated: 19 Aug 2011

Chile’s raisin production is estimated to increase during the present Marketing Year due to a larger availability of grapes.

THIS REPORT CONTAINS ASSESSMENTS OF COMMODITY AND TRADE ISSUES MADE BY USDA STAFF AND NOT NECESSARILY STATEMENTS OF OFFICIAL U.S. GOVERNMENT POLICY Required Report - public distribution Date: 7/29/2011 GAIN Report Number: CI1026 Chile Raisin Annual Dried Fruit Report Approved By: Rachel Bickford, Agricultural Attaché Prepared By: Luis Hennicke, Agricultural Specialist Report Highlights: Chile?s raisin production is estimated to increase during the present Marketing Year due to a larger availability of grapes. Executive Summary: For Marketing Year 2011/12 (Jan-Dec 2011), raisin production is expected to be slightly larger when compared to the previous year, as the availability of discarded table grapes is larger this year. Commodities: Raisins Production: Raisin production in 2011/12 (Jan-Dec 2011) is expected to be only slightly larger than last year?s output in spite of a larger table grape production when compared to the previous year. Adverse weather conditions delayed maturity of Thompson Seedless table grapes in most production areas and a larger demand of grapes by the wine industry did not allow large amounts of discarded table grapes to be available for raisin production. A smaller output of grapes for wine during this season added to an increased in demand for table grapes, which are used for the wine and juice industry, increased prices for the discarded grapes. Additionally, as a result of lower temperatures at the end of the summer months, many producers could not sundry as many grapes as last year (Thompson Seedless grapes). In Chile there are no grapes planted only for raisin production. Raisins come from discarded table grapes that do not make it for exports or domestic fresh consumption which are usually sundried into raisins. Mainly grapes from Thompson and Flame Seedless varieties are used for raisin production. Most of the drying process in Chile is carried out by using the sun to dry grapes. Grapes are laid on plastic film in open fields, where they are sun-dried for a 15 to 20 day period. After the drying process is completed they are washed and cleaned from stems, sized and packed either in bulk or smaller containers depending on the destination market. For the coming years industry sources expect, production to recover to similar levels than in the past, which is to an estimated 80 thousand metric tons, in spite of an increasing areas of table grape orchards that are suitable for drying into raisins are being uprooted. A large number of farmers who have had negative economic returns with table grape varieties during the last few seasons have decided to uproot their orchards. Additionally, the on-going revaluation of the peso against the dollar is making production for exports less attractive as income is in dollars and cost is in pesos. Raisins are mainly produced for exports; over 90 percent of production is for that market. Consumption: Chile's best quality raisins are exported. As with most of Chile?s fruit production, the domestic market normally receives raisins rejected for export. Because domestic raisin consumption is small, it does not influence production or trade decisions. The main end-users of raisins are the baking, pastry and ice cream industries. Raisins are primarily used in finished products such as cakes, cookies, and ice cream. Non-industrial usage and snack consumption are very limited. Trade: Over 90 percent of Chilean raisin production is exported. The Latin American market accounts for half of Chile's raisin exports and it is generally the destination for the lower quality raisins. For next year, exports are expected to increase again due to the greater availability of raisins. Raisins are normally exported year around, but the months of heaviest flow are June/July and November/December of each year. Stocks: Most raisin exporters have a policy of maintaining stock levels close to zero. Whenever possible, exporters prefer to sell or export all of their production. Variations in the ending stock level from one marketing year to the next, generally only means that raisins have not yet been shipped to their destination. Policy: The government does not provide direct export subsidies or play any role in setting quality standards for this product. Prices: Raisins currently are not a key consumer item in Chile. Consequently, neither the government nor the various exporter associations maintain retail or wholesale prices. Export prices for CY2010 averaged US$2,222/MT, up from CY2009 average price of US$1,520/MT. Production, Supply and Demand Data Statistics: Raisins Chile 2009/2010 2010/2011 2011/2012 Market Year Begin: Market Year Begin: Market Year Begin: Jan 2009 Jan 2010 Jan 2011 USDA New USDA New USDA New Official Post Official Post Official Post Area Planted 56,000 56,000 0 62,411 62,462 Area Harvested 49,100 46,900 0 53,085 53,118 Beginning Stocks 220 220 100 879 707 Production 65,000 81,000 75,000 65,000 75,000 Imports 700 186 600 773 293 Total Supply 65,920 81,406 75,700 66,652 76,000 Exports 63,600 78,277 73,000 63,545 72,800 Domestic 2,220 2,250 2,600 2,400 2,500 Consumption Ending Stocks 100 879 100 707 700 Total Distribution 65,920 81,406 75,700 66,652 76,000 HA, MT Author Defined: Export Trade Matrix: Country Chile Commodity Raisins Exports for: 2009 2010 Time Period Jan-Dec Units: M.T. Units: Volume Value Volume Value U.S. 12,917 18,014 U.S. 8,127 14,971 Others Others México 10,161 12,350 Russia 6,601 17,048 U.K. 6,746 9,854 U.K. 6,209 13,269 Peru 6,283 7,751 Peru 5,896 12,753 Colombia 5,506 7,133 Colombia 5,269 11,068 Brazil 4,559 6,577 México 4,845 8,828 Venezuela 3,812 11,955 Netherlands 3,679 9,282 Russia 3,809 6,453 Venezuela 3,548 10,664 Netherlands 3,395 5,968 Ecuador 2,043 4,083 Germany 2,241 3,149 Denmark 1,720 3,338 Ecuador 1,767 2,240 Poland 1,626 3,765 Total for Others 48,279 41,436 Others not Listed 17,081 13,982 Grand Total 78,277 118,943 63,545 141,182 Time Period Jan-Jun Exports for: 2010 2011 U.S. 3,480 5,834 U.S. 2,666 5,460 Others Others U.K. 2,395 4,631 México 2,283 4,602 Colombia 2,360 4,778 Colombia 2,216 4,638 México 2,349 4,053 U.K. 1,607 3,792 Russia 2,223 5,212 Netherlands 1,453 3,682 Netherlands 1,435 3,212 Russia 1,371 3,324 Peru 1,408 2,680 Peru 1,203 2,689 Denmark 874 1,585 Germany 1,199 2,877 Venezuela 848 2,018 Taiwan 738 1,637 Spain 834 1,723 France 715 2,337 Ecuador 701 1,317 Spain 695 1,650 Total for Others 15,427 13,478 Others not Listed 5,214 6,172 Grand Total 24,120 48,588 22,316 52,586 Note: Volume in M.T. and Value in Thous.US$ F .O.B.
Posted: 19 August 2011, last updated 19 August 2011

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