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Mango prices expected to rise as Brazil deal begins


Mango World Magazine reported on the short supply of mangoes two days ago:

August 05, 2015 | 1:26 pm EDT


Green Keitt mangoes from California are in season and should be available nationwide by the second week of August, said Robert Schueller, public relations director for World Variety Produce Inc., Los Angeles.

Photo by World Variety Produce

An end to sluggish mango markets could be on the horizon as production shifts from one major producer to another, said Manuel Michel, executive director of the Orlando, Fla.-based National Mango Board.

“It looks like mangoes from Mexico will end earlier, which will give Brazil a wider window to send to the U.S.,” Michel said August 3.

That should translate to stronger markets, he said.

“There was quite a bit in the market through the summer. As the imports go down, prices should go up.”

Some customers are already concerned about prices for Brazil’s fruit, said Sabine Henry, tropical manager for Central American Produce Inc. in Pompano Beach, Florida. She said the large, early volumes out of Mexico kept prices down through that deal.

“The transition to Brazil will be a bit difficult because of the low prices out of Mexico this year. We are going to start (Brazil) with double-digit pricing,” Henry said August 5. 

“It could be double the price of the Mexican mangoes.”

Michel said Ecuador could start shipping to North America later than usual, giving Brazil even more of an advantage.

“Normally Ecuador starts in October. Now it’s pushed back.”

Henry agreed. She said prices for fruit from Brazil will likely remain high, partly because of the situation in Ecuador. 

Weather effects from El Niño could reduce Ecuador’s volumes by 20% to 30% this year, Henry said.

Another reason Henry is excited about the Brazil deal this year is the approval from the U.S. Department of Agriculture for 5 and 6 size mangoes from that country.

“We expect 10% to 20% more volume from Brazil this year because they are able to send 5 and 6 sizes for the first time,” Henry said.

Brazilian mangoes imported by World Variety Produce Inc., Los Angeles, likely will be priced “a little higher than average” said Robert Schueller, public relations director.

On Aug. 3, the U.S. Department of Agriculture reported prices of $4.75 for one-layer flats of Keitt 4-5s from Mexico crossing through Texas, $5 for 6s and $5-5.25 for 7-12s.

Schueller said World Variety is currently shipping California green keitts.

“The season is just starting for this domestic mango,” Schueller said August 5.

“We should be seeing good volumes distributed nationwide this week and next. They have an eight- or nine-week season so we should have good volumes to October.”

Schueller said this is the eighth season for World Variety Produce to ship the California green Keitts and that production volumes have grown 10% to 25% each year.

Volumes from Brazil in early August were still relatively light, Michel said.

“They’re sending some now, but they play the market. They send if it benefits them. They may send more shortly.”

Tommy Atkins will be the main variety shipping from Brazil, said Michel, who visited the Petrolina growing region in July and reported excellent quality.

Mexican production in August was coming from northern Sinaloa, Michel said. Those volumes could wind down by mid-September — two weeks to a month earlier than normal.

About 80% of volumes from Sinaloa in early August were Keitts, with some Kents shipping also, Michel said.

Mexico’s mango volumes for 2015 will likely fall short of the 2013 record, Michel said. Total exports to the U.S. should be about 64 million boxes, he said.

Crops and Markets Editor Andy Nelson contributed to this article.

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