The Kingdom exported 222,200.12 tonnes of fresh mangoes and mango products in the first 10 months of 2021, up by 155.9 per cent year-on-year, of which the Vietnamese market absorbed 175,324.48 tonnes, the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries reported.
Exports of fresh mangoes, dehydrated products, and syrup weighed in at 202,141.81 tonnes, 15,651.42 tonnes and 4,400.89 tonnes, respectively, representing year-on-year increases of 157.83 per cent, 195.41 per cent, and 41.04 per cent, the ministry said citing figures from its National Phytosanitary Database.
Vietnam was the main buyer of fresh mango at 174,765.18 tonnes, followed by Thailand (26,969.28 tonnes), China (215.98 tonnes), South Korea (124.38 tonnes), Hong Kong (50.78 tonnes), Singapore (16.20 tonnes) and Kuwait (0.01 tonnes).
China topped the list of dried mango importers at 12,330.54 tonnes, followed by Thailand (1,314.53 tonnes), the Philippines (884.30 tonnes), Vietnam (559.30 tonnes), Japan (512.50 tonnes), the UK (21.14 tonnes), South Korea (17.50 tonnes), the US (8.56 tonnes), Taiwan (three tonnes), Kazakhstan (0.05 tonnes) and Russia (0.002 tonnes).
The Philippine and Chinese markets bought 4,252.89 tonnes and 148 tonnes, respectively, of Cambodian mango syrup.
Hun Lak, CEO of Rich Farm Asia Co Ltd, a local agricultural investor that grows mangoes of the Keo Romiet variety in Kampong Speu province, told The Post on November 1 that the mango export market and prices have been better in 2021 compared to previous years.
This was especially the case in May, in the wake of the Kingdom’s maiden direct shipment of fresh mangoes to the Chinese market following authorisation by China’s General Administration of Customs (GACC), he said, optimistic that orders from the East Asian juggernaut would continue to come in for the foreseeable future.
He projected that mango exports would gain a burst of momentum in end-November, during the harvest season, especially those to China.
The dry season harvest typically takes place in March-April, and the smaller rainy season harvest in October-November.
On the other hand, Lak stressed that for mango exports to expand, growers and investors must ensure that cultivation, packaging and transport of the fruit comply with the standards set by each destination market, especially quality and phytosanitary rules.
He also acknowledged that sky-high shipping costs are also plaguing Cambodian exports.
Fresh Cambodian mangoes are selling at $1.20-1.50 per kg in China, he noted.
On April 26, the GACC officially approved the list of 37 mango plantations and five packaging factories capable of exporting fresh mango to the Chinese market. The inaugural direct export of fresh Cambodian mango to China left the Kingdom’s shores on May 7.
As of 2020, mango was grown on 130,000ha, of which 91,104ha (70 per cent) were harvested, yielding an average of more than 1.38 million tonnes per each of the year’s two seasons, according to the ministry.