What are the world’s favourite fruits?

12 June 2018
ITC News
Some fruits we love more than others and they are…

The world seems unable to get enough of fruits. In the past 10 years, the international trade in fruits risen by 69%, totalling $100.34 billion in 2017.

But what are the fruits we desire the most?

The world’s undisputed favourite fruit is the banana. In 2017, 21.54 billion tons of bananas were traded across the world, worth $14.45 billion. This accounts for more than 14% of all fruits traded. Most exports originate from three countries in Latin America and the Caribbean – Ecuador, Costa Rica and Colombia – whereas the biggest importers are the United States, Russia and Europe.

Grape is the second most popular fruit. The cultivation of domestic grapes began some 6,000-8,000 years ago in the Middle East and are today grown on most continents. In 2017 around $9.43 billion worth of grapes were traded, with Chile, the US, the Netherlands and Italy being the biggest exporters.

At third place comes the apple. Another fruit that has been cultivated for thousands of years, originally in China and Europe, although its origins can be traced to Central Asia. China, the US and Italy are its biggest exporters, exporting $1.46 billion, $975.25 million and $970.37m worth of apples respectively. The main importers of apples in 2017 were Germany, Russia and the UK.

Whereas the top three fruits seem to be constant, the world seems to have changing taste when it comes to other fruits. The trade in avocados, for example, grew by 22% in 2013-2017. Tamarinds, lychees, kiwis and mangoes have also seen spikes in their popularity in recent years.

Despite the strong trade in fruits, ITC’s Export Potential Map suggests that export opportunities remain unexplored. In fact, the trade in fruits has the potential to more than double under the right circumstances. Worthwhile mentioning is that non-tariff measures play a big role in the international trade in fruits, as most countries have strict health and safety treatments, quality checks and certifications on their imports to protect consumers. More transparency, cost-reductions and ensuring the right standards for fruits could see more producers benefiting from the global trade in fruits.

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