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Higher production of grapes in India

"Freight rates going from $1200 to $5000"

The Indian grape season has been plagued by a variety of challenges. Sumit Bhujbal, business development manager of Shubham Enterprises explains: “The Indian grape season lasts between December and April. In this season, unseasonal rain was seen at the start, which resulted in a loss of grapes in these affected areas. During this time, the price of grapes did increase. Later on, by January 1st, there was a truck driver protest of two to three days, which disrupted the whole supply chain. As a result, we had to stop harvesting and packing for a few days. As days went by, the situation got better, and currently everything is working smoothly, as it should, for the remainder of the season.”

The main focus of Shubham Enterprises is the Middle East, which means they’ve still been able to export a lot of volumes, Bhujbal states. “As of now, harvests are going great with grapes such as Thompson, Sonaka, Super Sonaka, Crimson, Black Sharad and Black Jumbo packing for various markets. We can see a rise in demand globally for Indian grapes. There are definitely more volumes of grapes available this season compared to the last one. Some of which got affected by the rains, but still, there was a higher production. Our company has been exporting grapes for the last 15 years, with Middle Eastern countries being our main market for export. However, we are also working with European and Southeast Asian markets.”

The export to Europe has become very difficult and pricey, but according to Bhujbal, the company is still sending shipments to their European clients: “The Red Sea situation has become very uncertain, with freight rates going from $1200 to $5000. We’re also looking at an increased transit time by two weeks. That has become a big concern for us as an exporter, as there’s no sign that the conflict is de-escalating. It's a difficult situation for both Indian exporters and European importers. We have opted for vessels diverting around the Cape of Good Hope and reaching Europe, with improvised packaging, which will only be an option until the situation is back to normal at Red Sea.”

For more information:
Sumit Bhujbal
Shubham Enterprises
Tel: +91 98 215 191 89