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Market insights on Ecuadorian agricultureqrcode

Sep. 21, 2016

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Sep. 21, 2016
Ecuador continues to be the world's largest banana exporter, and the Sigatoka disease continues to take up the most time and resources to control. Concerns about Fusarium 4 have been raised, and the country is already taking steps to prevent the entry of the fungus, which is already present in Asia. Banana growers are dependent on high international prices, and at present, Ecuador is at a disadvantage compared with Colombia and Costa Rica, which have signed trade agreements with the European community. Ecuador’s bananas are charged a higher tariff to enter the EU market, causing it to lose market share. This situation has forced exporters to look into new markets, such as China, Eastern Europe, and Russia. These markets are growing in demand for bananas, but prices here are not as attractive as they are in the European or US markets.

Cocoa production continues to increase as demand for Ecuador’s high-quality cocoa keeps growing worldwide. Cocoa farmers are slowly but steadily improving the technology on their farms. More farmers are establishing disease prevention, weed control, and fertilization programs based on soil analyses---practices that were once quite rare.

Global palm oil prices have dropped, making the product less attractive to farmers. This has resulted in a reduction in the supply of fertilizers and crop protection products. Crystal Chemical was the first company to export an ag-chemical produced in the country, and now is currently exporting from Ecuador to 6 Latin American countries. Crystal says that this year, there was strong concern over the potential effects of El Niño, but luckily, it was not as bad as the one in 1997–1998. That was a disaster for many crops. This time, damage to crops was limited to the most susceptible areas.

The following table shows the main crops (by area) and corresponding pests/diseases/weeds in the Ecuadorian market:

Source: AgroNews

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