Agronometrics in Charts: Mexican Grape Exports to the US Projected to Increase

By Agronometrics | 20 April 2023

In this installment of the ‘Agronometrics In Charts’ series, Sarah Ilyas studies the state of the Mexican grape industry. Each week the series looks at a different horticultural commodity, focusing on a specific origin or topic visualizing the market factors that are driving change.

Sonora is Mexico’s biggest table grape-producing state. The vast majority of grapes from the state are designated for exports, predominantly to the United States. At its annual summit held on March 22 in Tubac, Mexico’s Sonora table grape producers association (AALPUM) estimated 21.7 million cartons for the 2023 season, with just over half in green grapes. That would be up 1.3 percent over last year’s 21.4 million cartons.

grape volumes by history 8

Source: USDA Market News via Agronometrics.
(Agronometrics users can view this chart with live updates here)

Producers report a steep decline in red globe varieties, according to AALPUM president Marco Antonio Camou. Camou stated that dwindling supplies of summer fruits in the United States, as a result of California’s persistently poor weather, could contribute to a rise in demand this year. 

This year, harvest started a little early in Jalisco — around the end of March — whereas it’s usually closer to the first week of April. The season will last until the second week in May. This year, weather and production are normal in Peru and Chile, while Mexico appears to be seven to 10 days late, and in California, harvesting typically begins on July 4 but will likely be closer to July 10 this year, says Pete Hronis, senior vice president of sales and marketing at ​​for Bari Produce.

grape volumes by origin 2

Source: USDA Market News via Agronometrics.
(Agronometrics users can view this chart with live updates here)

Mexico’s exports to the United States flow primarily through the Nogales district, as most exportable supply is derived from the state of Sonora.

grape volumes by market 1

Source: USDA Market News via Agronometrics.
(Agronometrics users can view this chart with live updates here)

Industry pioneer and leader in table grape breeding and licensing, Sun World International LLC, and Divine Flavor, a produce brand representing the largest grape growing operations in Mexico, have reached a strategic collaboration agreement to deliver more premium table grapes to North American markets at strategic times of the year, thereby boosting volume during critical holiday periods. The collaboration agreement will bring more than 3 million boxes of Mexico grown table grapes to market during the months of December through May with Sun World’s premium green seedless with AUTUMNCRISP branded grapes being the primary focus. “Being able to provide this premium grape variety during critical windows of the year, when no other grape company has, will be a major game changer for Divine Flavor and our grower family, that is exactly what this collaboration agreement with Sun World entails,” says Carlos Bon, VP of sales for Divine Flavor.

Fresh produce imports from Mexico are projected to increase business activity and provide a total economic impact of over $53 billion by 2030. Despite the headway Mexico has made, farmers still find it difficult to obtain funding to transition to new grape varieties, and to incorporate technology in the field for efficient use and control of water to address drought and climate change-related pressures. Farmers also face higher input costs to produce grapes and contemplate growing more profitable horticultural crops. For many producers, while grapes may be their primary product, they are already diversified into other vegetable and fruit products like tomatoes, peppers, squash, asparagus, and watermelon.

In our ‘In Charts’ series, we work to tell some of the stories that are moving the industry. Feel free to take a look at the other articles by clicking here.

All pricing for domestic US produce represents the spot market at Shipping Point (i.e. packing house/climate controlled warehouse, etc.). For imported fruit, the pricing data represents the spot market at Port of Entry.

You can keep track of the markets daily through Agronometrics, a data visualization tool built to help the industry make sense of the huge amounts of data that professionals need to access to make informed decisions. If you found the information and the charts from this article useful, feel free to visit us at where you can easily access these same graphs, or explore the other 21 commodities we currently track.

Written by: Sarah Ilyas

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