Skip to main content

Agronometrics in Charts: USITC Rules Imported Blueberries do not Seriously Injure US Industry


On Feb. 11 the U.S. International Trade Commission (USITC) determined that fresh, chilled, or frozen blueberries are not being imported into the United States in such increased quantities as to be a substantial cause of serious injury, or the threat of serious injury, to the domestic industry producing an article like or directly competitive with the imported article.

The determination was made in the context of an investigation initiated on September 29, 2020 at the request of the U.S. Trade Representative.

The Commission’s determination resulted from a 5-0 vote, and as a result, the investigation will end, and the Commission will not recommend a remedy to the President.

An affirmative vote could have eventually resulted in the imposition of trade barriers such as tariffs for imports of what has become one of the star products of the produce industry over recent years.

Making a Case Through Data
Although Agronometrics has not been a party to the proceedings, our team was involved from the beginning in making sure that both sides had accurate and reliable market data with which to build their arguments. To this end our services were commissioned by the International Blueberry Organization (IBO), making their members data available through a bespoke online application which we published on November 24th 2020. 
 
 
 
At the same time, some of our customers referred our service to Dr. Prusa, an economist working on behalf of the Blueberry Coalition for Progress and Health, a trade group that opposes sanctions on imported blueberries.

Dr. Prusa's efforts relied heavily on the data made available through Agronometrics. Some of his findings were highlighted in our article published on Jan. 12, 2021.


Figure 5 - Lack of Temporal Overlap of Supply (2019)

 
Source: USDA AMS Weekly Nonorganic & Organic Volume(“Movement”) Data (as compiled by Agronometrics adjusted Canadian data (APHIS undercount)
 

At the hearing, it became evident that looking at weekly data was necessary to understand the industry. Dr. Prusa's report reflected that, however, the study put together by the American Blueberry Growers Alliance, the trade group that was in favor of import restrictions, mostly aggregated data yearly.

As part of their post-hearing arguments, Capital Trade Inc, which was contracted by the Alliance, dug much deeper into the trade data counting again on Agronometrics to help them more easily navigate the USDA’s data. Some of their findings were featured in our article published on the 26th of January 2021.
 
 
 
Sources: US and Import Volume are from Agronometrics based on weekly Movement reports from the USDA Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS). US and Import Prices are from Agronometrics based in weekly Shipping Point reports from AMS, weighted by Movement volume. All prices in dollars per pound.
 
As mentioned at the beginning of the post, the arguments presented by the Blueberry Coalition for Progress and Health ultimately won out, with all five commissioners determining that there was no injury to domestic blueberry production from imports.

At the moment this is all we know. The findings will be presented to the President of the United States before being made public, which could take another 4 to 6 weeks.
Written by: Colin Fain
Original published in FreshFruitPortal.com on February 16, 2021 (Link)

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Blueberry boom: Worldwide growth creates challenges for NW producers

Overview of the northwest blueberry season by Doug Krahmer of Berries Northwest, Cort Brazelton of Fall Creek Farm and Nursery, Kasey Cronquist of the U.S. Highbush Blueberry Council and Mark Hurst of Hurst's Berry Farm, complemented by charts from Agronometrics. Original published in www.capitalpress.com  on July 30, 2020 ALBANY, Ore. — On a seasonably warm July afternoon in the fertile Willamette Valley, Doug Krahmer stood between rows of organic blueberries and watched as a large mechanical harvester rolled slowly through the field, rattling bushes heavy with ripe fruit. Measuring a little more than 15 feet tall, 11 feet wide and weighing 7 tons, the harvester seemingly floated in the distance over neat rows while fiberglass rods, or “fingers,” shook the berries onto a conveyor belt that swooped them to the upper deck and into plastic crates. From there, the crates were loaded into refrigerated trucks and driven from the farm north of Albany, Ore., to a packing shed ea

Agronometrics in Charts: Demand for berries skyrockets in 2021

This time for the ‘In Charts’ series we will give an update as to how the average prices of berries have been behaving. Specifically, we will look at the prices of blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, and blackberries in the United States market and compare them with previous seasons. An increase in demand, brought on by the tendency to consume “superfoods” such as berries during the Covid-19 pandemic, seem to have pushed prices up despite the fact that volumes imported by the United States have been similar or higher than those of previous years. Let's look at each particular case: Blueberries Blueberry prices experienced a significant increase from week 3 of 2021, showing the highest prices of the last 5 seasons for the same date. If we observe the following chart, we can see that, for week 7 of 2021, the average price of conventional blueberries was $7.60 per kilo. This is 24 percent higher than in 2020 when the average price was $6.14 per kilo. Volumes for blueberr

Peru's blueberry oversupply takes its toll on export price

Overview of the Peruvian blueberry season, complemented by charts from Agronometrics.   Original published in FreshPlaza.com   on November 25, 2020  This year's Peruvian blueberry season began in June with the export of 1,010 tons worth 5 million dollars. These figures represented a 25% increase in volume and a 77% increase in value over the same month of 2019. The lower production in the northern hemisphere due to weather problems allowed producers to achieve attractive prices of $ 5.15 per kilogram in June. Volume (in Kg) of blueberry from PerĂº in the US market Source: USDA Market News via Agronometrics . (Agronometrics users can view this chart with live updates here ) The good reception of Peruvian blueberries and the increase in prices encouraged exports during July, a month in which the country shipped 4,808 tons (+ 108%) for 26 million dollars (+ 102%). In this month, the increase in the Peruvian supply generated a slight 3% fall in the typical prices of the month,