Thanksgiving in the US means cranberry consumption – about 20 percent of all US cranberry consumption is done during the holidays – and a new certificate issued to US cranberry growers means that the red berry will have an easier time making it to China as well, where demand for cranberry has grown dramatically in recent years. The Cranberry Marketing Committee USA (CMC) announced on Tuesday [25 November 2014] that the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) now allows for issuing phytosanitary certificates for frozen cranberry shipments to China…Full Article: China Daily Nov 2014

Key Points

  • Phytosanitary certificates are a market advantage for fresh produce growers as non-certified products are generally quarantined and inspected at Chinese ports, raising the overall cost (and risk) for suppliers. For instance, Chilean and Canadian frozen cranberries have been exported to China with phytosanitary certificates, giving these two countries a distinct advantage over US supplies.
  • According to the executive director of the CMC, in 2014, China imported approximately 58,000 barrels (~2,722 MTs) of frozen cranberries.
  • In addition to US frozen cranberries, frozen blueberries and strawberries are also eligible to receive phytosanitary certificates.

ChinaAg Comments

  • Global cranberry production totals approximately 500,000 metric tons per year. Cranberry production primarily takes places in the US states of Massachusetts, New Jersey, Wisconsin, Oregon and Washington, as well as in Canada (e.g. British Columbia and Quebec) and Chile.
  • China primarily consumes dried cranberries as opposed to cranberry juice.
  • From January 2006 to September 2012, Chinese imports of cranberries, bilberries, and blueberries were somewhat erratic, dipping to 975 metric tons (MTs) in 2009 before increasing to over 3,000 MTs in 2011. Chile, the United States, and North Korea were the top suppliers. From 2006 to September 2012, Chile witnessed their import share (by volume) of China’s market jump from 1% to 54%. The U.S. also saw growth, with their import market share rising from 10% to 31%. However, their share has stagnated somewhat around 30% since 2010. North Korea noted a decline of 20% to 8% over the same time period.

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