by Steven Nyland, OrganicCrops. Posted on 11 March 2016, 10:16 hrs
Peru has maintained its position as the world’s largest exporter of quinoa in terms of export volume and business transactions.
According to Carlos Garcia of the CCEX-Chamber of Commerce of Lima, Peru export volume of 42,000 tons of quinoa is valued at USD 143 million. This is an increase of 13% compared to 2014. Neighboring country Bolivia exported some 25,000 tons during 2015.
“Peru has bypassed Bolivia as the world’s largest quinoa exporter in 2014” said Garcia.
Peru’s total quinoa production for 2015 was 120,000 tons of both conventional and organic quinoa. An increase of 5% compared to 2014. The largest producing area is Puno, which accounts for over 37% (44,400 tons) of the national production of the crop, followed by Arequipa (24,000 tons), Ayacucho (16,800 tons) and Junin (9,600 tons). According to the Peru Ministry of Agriculture, the total production area is currently some 65,000 hectares making the yield of Peruvian quinoa production nearly 2 tons per hectare.
Peru’s main wholesale quinoa export markets remain unchanged with the United States in the lead with 33% (13,760 tons) of the total export volume, followed by Canada (3,360 tons), the United Kingdom and The Netherlands (both 2,940 tons) and Italy (2,100 tons).
The CCEX expects the trend to continue as global consumption of quinoa will increase of the years to come. Additional producing nations will have a positive effect on quinoa market penetration.
Garcia adds “It is important that Peru is positioned as the great ancestral producer of the Andean golden grain and that offers a high standard of quality and unique varieties”.
Peruvian Quinoa exporter, OrganicCrops, expects production and export numbers to be a lot lower for 2016. The decrease in quinoa wholesale and export prices in 2014 and 2015 had a significant effect on the farmers decision regarding cultivating quinoa in 2016 and beyond. Estimates go as far that 25% of all quinoa farmers have not cultivated quinoa for the 2016 season.
El Nino has caused serious damage to crops in the Puno and Arequipa areas of Peru. It is expected that the effects of El Nino, together with the drop in cultivation volume will result in a production decrease of 45-55% for 2016. This, unfortunately, means that we’ll see yet another quinoa wholesale and export price increase after the price drop of 2015.