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Pineapples generate the largest export revenues for Panama

Staff Writer |
Panama's pineapple exports in January 2017 amounted to $1.126 million dollars.

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This is a positive number in the statistics of the Comptroller General of the Republic, as it was the only fruit that recorded an increase when compared to the same period of 2016.

Even though the income and export volume of this item has decreased over the past three years, the pineapple, which is mainly produced in La Chorrera, continues to lead fruit exports abroad, followed by bananas, watermelon, and cantaloupe.

According to the president of the Panama's Union of Exporters of non-traditional agricultural items (Gantrap), Ana Cheng de Rios, the export data among fruits vary because pineapples are produced throughout the year, while melon and watermelon are only produced in the first four months of the year.

She added that the area devoted to melons and watermelon production had decreased and that the number of companies engaged in exporting them had also decreased, which is why there was a decline in exports for these products when compared to January 2016.

She also said that, currently, there was a company of exporting pineapple by air to Middle Eastern markets and that, although they were running tests, they have discovered that shipping them by air is favorable for them, as the pineapple shipped by sea take about 21 days to arrive to that destination.

Ana Cheng de Rios said that the European countries were the largest importers of fruit from Panama.

"Most of our exports arrive at the port of Rotterdam, in the Netherlands, and then it is distributed to Spain, Germany and France," said Cheng.