Ukraine becomes a major player in the export of frozen blueberries to China
Ukrainian exports of frozen blu
eberries to China experienced a notable increase during the first quarter of 2020. According to Ukrainian media, the country shipped 5.5 times more blueberries in the first quarter of 2020 than in the first quarter of 2019, reaching a total value of $ 6 million. Thus, Ukraine has positioned itself as China's main supplier of frozen blueberries in the northern hemisphere, surpassing Canada, Sweden, Latvia, Belarus, Russia, and Poland.
Frozen blueberries are the only product that Ukraine currently exports to the Asian country. In 2015, Ukrainian blueberry exports amounted to $ 383,000, and in 2018 they amounted to $ 2.8 million. Exports continued to increase in 2019 and amounted to $ 10 million. Experts predict that in 2020 Ukrainian frozen blueberry exports to China will achieve a new record. China's blueberry market has expanded rapidly in recent years. The total market value is forecast to reach 40 billion yuan (US $ 5.7 billion) by 2025, with a production that will surpass 400,000 tons, making China the world's largest producer and consumer of blueberries.
However, compared to fresh blueberries, frozen blueberries only account for a small portion of the market. In contrast, frozen blueberries account for a sizeable share of the North American market, which is currently the biggest producer and consumer of blueberries. The main variety in North America is the Highbush blueberry. The annual production volume currently stands at nearly 340,000 tons, 200,000 tons (59%) of which are fresh, and 140,000 tons (41%) are frozen. From this perspective, frozen blueberries still have great development potential in the Chinese market. Source: China Produce Report / blueberriesconsulting.com