A trade mission for Chilean Blueberry Committee is in India on a week long visit, seeking potential buyers and logistics service providers and promoting Chilean fresh blueberry exports. The committee, which is part of the Chilean Fruit Exporters Association (ASOEX), is travelling with promotion agency ProChile’s support to New Delhi, Mumbai for meetings, ahead of Asia Fruit Logistica in Hong Kong next week. Talking to FE, the committee’s executive director Andrés Armstrong said, “We have been trying to get into the Indian market for ten years. Now, we are here and are in a position to export fresh blueberries to India. For this we have better tarrifs.” The delegates who are in the country until next week, had meetings with importers, distributors and retailers, in New Delhi on Friday and will be visiting the major wholesale markets, retail chains, port facilities and logistical platforms in both India and Dubai.
“Although household penetration for fresh blueberries remains low in India, Chile has recently signed a commercial agreement with India aimed at helping facilitate greater blueberry and avocado exports to the country. We will talk about the alternatives to get into the Indian market which is huge for us,” Armstrong pointed out. Responding to a question on how big is the Indian market, the senior executive said, “India is a huge market. We are going to Mumbai which has a huge potential as well as we are in talks with various logistics companies as that’s the main need.” “The principal objective is to generate new contacts with importers, distributors and retail chains, and to spread the word about the new export agreement between Chile and India.
“This type of trade mission is precisely one of the reasons why the Chilean Blueberry Committee exists. The committee works to open up new markets diversify channels and drive export opportunities. During the trip we will raise awareness of Chilean blueberries, their characteristics and availability,” he added. Chile retained its spot as the world’s leading blueberry exporter in 2016-17 with revenues of $631 million, but this figure represents a 15% year-on-year decline despite relatively stable tonnages. As competition grows, the pressure is on the Chilean industry to keep the super-fruit super-profitable. The trade mission would focus on communicating three key messages — Chile’s supply season from October to March, experience of complying with market regulations and customer requests in its role as the world’s leading exporter of fresh blueberries and commitment to growing the market in both India.