The new season of fresh pears is about to begin. And the sales of pears from storage are coming to an end. Some traders in more distant markets, however, have already decided to stop placing new orders for pears as backlogs in harbors cause significant delays in product movement. Li Xixi, spokesperson of Hebei Xionghan Fresh Produce Co., Ltd., recently talked about current conditions in the fresh pear export market.
"The Indonesian market began to prepare for Eid-al-Fitr in late March, which stimulated Indonesian market demand for pears from China. For a while, the purchase price of Crown pears in Chinese production areas increased by 10-30 yuan [1.51-4.53 USD] per week. This sudden increase in demand depleted much of the reserves. In some production areas suppliers were even reluctant to sell. The current reserves of Crown pears are roughly 15% smaller than around this time last year," said manager Li.
"The Indonesian market finished preparations two weeks ago, so product movement has significantly slowed down. And the price of Crown pears, although steady, has somewhat declined. The price came down to 20 yuan [3.02 USD] prior to the beginning of Ramadan. Suppliers in pear production areas already started to offer reduced prices in anticipation of a further price decline, but since the Crown pear reserves are rather low, the price has been relatively stable."
In addition to Indonesia, Malaysia is also an important export market for Xionghan Fresh Produce. "Our export volumes to other markets have been regular. However, our clients in Malaysia told us that the fruit market in Malaysia is rather depressed at the moment. Apple and pear sales are quite slow and the prices are not too high. The overall export volume has declined by around 10%-15% compared to the same period last year."
"Our order volume is stable at the moment. However, some of our more distant clients have already decided to finish their order contracts earlier than usual. Distant markets suffer from long shipping times due to delays in congested ports. Clients in Vancouver, for example, continued to purchase fresh pears until the middle of May last year, but this year they stopped buying fresh pears in the middle of April.
"It takes only 12-15 days to ship from Qingdao to Vancouver, but because Vancouver harbor is congested, clients have to wait an additional 20 days before they receive their products. In one extreme case a client received their pears 51 days after we dispatched them. Although the product quality of the pears did not noticeably suffer, clients have still decided to finish their orders earlier than usual to avoid the problems caused by delayed shipping times."
When asked about the prospects for the new season of fresh pear export, manager Li replied: "Current conditions suggest that the production volume in the new season will decline. Moreover, shipping fees in various ports across the world have not shown a significant drop. Only shipping fees to some ports in South America and the Middle East have lowered. The shipping fees to Australia, New Zealand, Europe, and North America all still slightly increase every week. That is why we expect the purchase prices to rise next season."
"We have already talked to our clients about their purchase plans for the next season. Clients from Europe and North America indicate a desire for environmental protection, in particular when it comes to packaging methods. Many clients wish to reduce the use of plastics and reduce environmental pollution. We are on the same page with our clients and do our best to reduce the use of plastics in packaging."
For more information:
Hebei Xionghan Fresh Produce Co., Ltd.
Shijiazhuang Star Crown Import and Export Trade Co., Ltd.
Tel.: +86 175 0320 2183