Chilean walnut output is set to rise slightly in 2014 in spite of the frosts that affected large parts of the country in September last year. Around 41,000 tonnes were harvested in 2013, while this year production is forecast to reach 42,500 tonnes, of which 95 per cent will go for export according to the Chilean Walnut Commission.
CWC president Andrés Rodríguez said Asian markets would remain the focus of the commission’s marketing campaigns in the coming year. “Having recently been granted access for our shelled walnuts in China, we are planning to launch a marketing campaign in the Asian country as well as repeating last year’s promotion in South Korea in a bid to reinforce Chile’s position as a supplier of quality walnuts for the fresh and processed markets,” he said.
In prunes, meanwhile, the outlook is similarly positive, with production set to reach 66,780 tonnes. Rodríguez, who is also vice president of the Chile Prunes Association, said although the crop was somewhat smaller than expected, it nevertheless represented an increase on last year’s volume.
He said promotional campaigns in Europe, Asia and Mexico last year had helped increase consumption of Chilean prunes on these markets and would be ramped up in 2014.