Chinese import volume of bananas from the Philippines declined by nearly 30%
When the temperatures rise, the retail volume of Chinese bananas declines. The traditional off season takes place in the summer, but that is also the time of year when bananas grow fastest.
Hainan, Guangdong, and especially Guangxi supply large volumes of bananas to the Chinese market. In general, there is a balance between supply and demand in the banana market. So even though market demand declines somewhat in summer, and the prices come down, the general market conditions remain stable.
Mr. Xia Zuxiang, chairman of the board at Shanghai Sophia International Trade Co. Ltd., recently talked about conditions in the Chinese banana import market.
Bananas from the Philippines
Data from the General Administration Customs China (GACC) shows that the Philippines supplied 60% of China’s banana import volume in July, making that country the greatest supplier of the Chinese banana market.
“Some of the smaller banana plantations in the Philippines lack the resources to cope with the added difficulties during the pandemic. That is why the product quality of their bananas is falling. Many smaller plantations struggle with Panama disease. The banana export from the Philippines to China declined by nearly 30%. However, the management in larger plantations remains up to regular standards. Both their production volume and product quality remains unaffected. These bananas are very popular in the Chinese market. Their price is around 8-9 USD (per box of 13.5 kg),” said Mr. Xia.
“Philippine bananas occupy an important position in the Chinese market, but they are besieged by bananas from Cambodia and Vietnam. Still, bananas from the Philippines are unbeaten in terms of product quality and flavor. Philippine bananas are often exported to high-end markets in Korea and Japan.”
South American bananas
The South American banana export volume to China declined by nearly 60% because of the Covid-19 pandemic. South America is far removed from China and distribution is difficult. Add to this the proximity of Southeast Asia to the Chinese market, and it is easy to see why the position of South American bananas weakened. There is still a steady supply of about 100 shipping containers per week that arrive in Dalian, north China, but most companies have temporarily halted banana import from South America.
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