Del Monte Philippines (DMPI) has reported a 37 per cent increase in its fresh pineapple export revenues for April 2021, compared to the same period in 2019.
According to Business World, DMPI’s revenue reached P5.85bn (US$116.3m), thanks to higher market share in China, which imported 182,000 tonnes in 2020.
“With an import volume of 182,000 tonnes last year, China is DMPI’s primary driver of growth in the North Asian markets, and China’s import of fresh pineapples grew at a compounded average growth rate of 18 per cent from 2015 to 2020,” the company said in a statement.
A report by analytics and consulting firm GlobalData indicates DMPI is the largest fresh pineapple exporter to China, accounting for 53 per cent of its market in 2020. It’s also among the top three fresh pineapple suppliers to Japan and South Korea, taking up 33 per cent and 21 per cent of the respective market share.
The rise in export revenue could be a result of China banning the import of Taiwanese fresh pineapples in March 2021.
According to DMPI, the MD2 variety is the preferred pineapple in the fresh market due to its longer shelf life, lower acidity, and better appearance. It said the MD2 variety currently accounts for 28 per cent of its 26,000ha plantation.
Goodfarmer owner Liu Zijie said DMPI’s fresh pineapple exports are a significant part of its branded business.
“Its MD2 variety is sold primarily under the S&W Sweet 16 brand in China, Japan and South Korea. Chinese consumers prefer trusted brands such as S&W which consumers are willing to pay a premium for,” said Zijie.
Goodfarmer is DMPI’s key distributor in China and is one of the leading fresh produce distribution firms.
Meanwhile, Business World reports DMPI is seeking to capitalise on China’s high demand as it plans to add new distributors that will cater to retail outlets in cities across the country.
“The company aims to double its fresh pineapple retail distribution network by 2025. It currently has about 15,000 outlets,” DMPI said.
Moving forward, DMPI said its plans to increase its production of MD2 pineapples, while also improving its operational efficiency, and fostering new business partnerships to widen its branded business in order to remain competitive in the market.
“DMPI is one of the three largest exporters of MD2 pineapple in Asia given the convergence of natural conditions that are uniquely abundant in the Philippines. [This is] complemented by extensive human and technological resources, and an enterprising commercial acumen and business leadership which have enabled DMPI to deliver premium quality pineapples through its business partners,” the company said.