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PERU JUMPS THE GUN : Mango volumes surge

By Andy Nelson 

December 29, 2015 | 10:48 am EST

An early start in Peru and continued big volumes from Ecuador pushed mango volumes up in December, and fruit should be promotable through January.

Peruvian volumes typically begin arriving in the U.S. for Central American Produce Inc., Pompano Beach, Fla., about the week of Dec. 28, said Sabine Henry, tropical manager.

This year, they began coming about three weeks earlier.

“There’s a lot of supply on big fruit,”  Henry said December 28, 2015.

Ecuadorian volumes peaked through the week of Dec. 21 before tapering off, Henry said, and by mid-January Peru would have the deal mostly to itself.

Until then, Henry expects a good mix of sizes. But when Peru takes over for good, Central American expects 9s and larger to make up 80% of all shipments.

Volumes out of Peru surged as expected in late December, but Ecuadorian shipments didn’t decline as much as anticipated, said Greg Golden, partner and sales manager for Mullica Hill, N.J.-based Amazon Produce Network.

Fruit from some Peruvian regions was picking two to three weeks earlier than normal, Golden said.

Growing weather has been excellent in both Ecuador and Peru, Golden said, with minimal rainfall. He expected a big push on arrivals through the first week of January.

With no rain forecasted in Peru in the immediate future, retailers can count on promotable quantities well into the New Year.

“Volumes should continue strong all of January with Peru kents.”

About 65% of the late December arrivals were slated for the East Coast, 35% for the West Coast, Golden said, due to faster delivery times to the East Coast.

The quality of Ecuadorian fruit has been good throughout the season on kents, tommy atkins and keitts, Golden said, and early-season Peruvian fruit has been “fantastic.”

“The fruit could not be any nicer or taste any better.”

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