According to estimates from the Peruvian Citrus Producers Association (Procitrus), in terms of sales, 2021 will be a good year for Peruvian citrus exporters. The importance of consuming vitamin C in times of the pandemic will continue to drive demand.
According to Procitrus CEO, Sergio del Castillo, in 2020 citrus shipments increased at a substantial rate of 39% in volume, while prices were maintained.
Sales of mandarins increased by 45 %, of oranges for juice by 40 %, of subtle lemon by 47 % and of Tahiti lemon by 22%.
By 2021, Del Castillo expects global demand for citrus to continue to rise, albeit at a slower pace, thus forecasting an average export growth rate of 10 %. A similar level of growth is considered in all categories.
In the last 3 years, lemon and orange exports showed surprising growth, so that their rate of evolution is very similar to that of mandarins, which is the main product of the citrus basket.
However, the share of lemon and orange is low: while mandarins make up about 80 % of exported citrus, oranges 10 % and lemon up to 7%.
Del Castillo points out that there are still possibilities for increased sales of oranges and lemons abroad, because each year Peru produces about 1.4 million tons of citrus, but exports only about 20 % (270,000 tons), and the remaining 80 % stay in the country.
It should be noted that crops destined for foreign trade must have the required certifications and sanitary surveillance.
In 2020, Peruvian mandarin production reached 525,000 tons, with Lima being the main producing department with 44% participation, followed by Junín (24 %), Ica (17 %) and Puno (6%), according to the Integrated System of Agrarian Statistics (SIEA) of the The Ministry of Agricultural Development and Irrigation (MIDAGRI).
Last year, orange production totaled 553,000 tons, Junín being the main producer with 45 % of the crops, followed by San Martín (14 %), Puno (9 %) and Cusco (5 %).
The main varietiesof citrus fruits for export in Peru are the late ones: tangelo and W. Murcott mandarin. The harvest of these varieties takes place in winter: June, July and August, when the main world markets do not have enough production.