Skip to main content

Blueberries in Charts: Finding opportunities in the gaps


The blueberry community will come together in Vancouver, Canada, next week for the International Blueberry Organization (IBO) Summit, with Agronometrics’ CEO Colin Fain presenting some of the research his team has done for the organization. All attendees are sure to gain some exciting insight about how and why the blueberry industry has been growing.

The industry got its start only a little more than a hundred years ago. At that time, Elizabeth White sold the first commercial blueberries out of her farm in New Jersey, U.S., bringing this highly nutritious fruit to commercial markets. Since then the fruit has been transformed into a cultural phenomenon. In fact, it came into popular consciousness in the 1971 version of Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, when Violet turned into the fruit. More recently, scientific research in the 1990’s and 2000’s has made the fruit a health icon, driving the impressive growth of the category that we see today.

Exemplifying the growth that the category has seen, 2018 saw the industry move 35% more volume than in 2010. The commercial realities of the category, all the while, have impacted prices during this level of growth, as they slowly fell under the weight of the growing volumes.

Non-organic blueberry prices and volumes


Source: USDA Market News via Agronometrics. (Agronometrics users can
view this chart with live updates here)

As we can tell from the chart below, the growth in volumes in the blueberry industry has not been evenly distributed. There are important increases between Chile’s season and the U.S.’s., making up for drops in production from the U.S.

Historic blueberry volumes


(Source: USDA Market News via Agronometrics. (Agronometrics users can
view this chart with live updates here)

Similar to how the first chart showed volumes affecting the category’s prices, the same is reflected by monthly data. The spikes in prices correlate to the valleys of production and vice-a-versa. This in turn has created a dynamic that is advantageous to the shoulders of the U.S. season. The reason? Prices are more preferable during these periods.

Historic blueberry prices per kilo



(Source: USDA Market News via Agronometrics. (Agronometrics users can
view this chart with live updates here)


Written by: Colin Fain
Original published in FreshFruitPortal.com on June 18, 2019 (Link)

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Apples in Charts: Honeycrisp, the queen of the U.S. market

Apples are a high-volume fruit commodity which growers need to produce very efficiently in order to be profitable, and the U.S. is no exception to this rule.

Apples from numerous origins are sold in the U.S. market, which is supplied principally by fruit from Washington State, as can be seen in the chart below.

Average historic arrival volumes of apples in the U.S. market, by origin


Source: USDA Market News via Agronometrics. (Agronometrics users can
view this chart with live updates here)
Average historic apple prices in the U.S. market have oscillated between around US$1.00 and US$1.75 per kilo over the last decade.

Historic weekly prices (USD/KG) of apples in the U.S. market


(Source: USDA Market News via Agronometrics. (Agronometrics users can
view this chart with live updates here)
But in the panorama of apples in the U.S., there is one variety that has stood out from the others – Honeycrisp. This queen of the U.S. apple market has great growth potential and excellent prospects…

Fruit in Charts: The winners and losers of 2018 (Part 3 of 3)

This article is the culmination of two previous posts that explored which commodities grew the most and the least through prices and volumes in both 2018 and over the last eight years. You can catch up on those previous articles with the following links:
The Winners and Losers of 2018 (Part 1 of 3)
The Winners and Losers of 2018 (Part 2 of 3)

In the process of writing the previous two articles, we saw that many of the commodities that had the highest prices also had the lowest volumes, and vice-versa. This begs the question, where are the best opportunities in this industry, where is growth and how do we define it? So in this article we will look at creating an index that combines the two factors and see if it can shed some light on this.

One of the most contentious commodities of 2018 was avocados, which saw the biggest drop in average yearly price compared with all other commodities we track. Avocados also saw one of the largest increases in volume of any commodity that we track. In …

Fruit in Charts: The winners and losers of 2018 (Part 2 of 3)

Here is part two of three looking at the winners and losers of 2018. The previous article was based on pricing information made available by the USDA market data, and here we will look at the volume data.

The USDA’s volume data is one of the most complete representations of a market available everywhere – not only considering imports to the U.S., but national production to a large extent as well. In 2018 we also saw a big improvement to the data set, which now offers more complete information for several commodities (mostly citrus), which used to only partially include U.S. production. Average Yearly Volumes by Commodity (Source: USDA Market News via Agronometrics)
[Agronometrics users can view this chart with live updates here
In the table below we can see the ranking of commodities by percentage of growth, which offers some good insights when considering the commercialization of the fruit the data set is trying to represent. By far the biggest increase in volume is for lemons and or…