In this installment of the ‘Agronometrics In Charts’ series, Sarah Ilyas studies the state of the Mexican mango season. 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.
Mango harvest in Mexico runs from January until early October. It starts in the southern states of Chiapas and Oaxaca, moves north along the west coast through Guerrero, Michoacan, Jalisco, Nayarit, ending in Sinaloa. The U.S. Department of Agriculture reports 65% of U.S. mangos are imported from Mexico. The majority are Tommy Atkins, Kent, and Ataulfo varieties, according to the National Mango Board. Ataulfos (also called Honeys or Champagnes) have a sweet, creamy flavor. They’re small, yellow, kidney-shaped, and firm with no fibers. Tommy Atkins (red), Hadens (red), Kents (red blush) and Keitts (green with a red blush) are larger, and round.
“Mango is a growing commodity, today it’s the most eaten fruit in the world and here in the United States it’s working its way up the ladder,” says Gary Clevenger, managing member of Freska Produce International. Mexico dominates the mango market, last year it produced 65 million lbs. of mangos for the US Market, an increase of 12% over the previous year. “We always look forward to the Mexican market, it’s the most volume that we get and this year is building up to be a good year,” adds Clevenger.
Emex Mexico, a leading association of Mexican mango exporters, claims that they expect a 5% to 8% increase in volume for the current season compared to 2022. “We are working hard on quality implementation, which is not easy, but we have made progress with several companies in this implementation and we hope to soon have a product with quality seals,” the company said.
March and April are the peak months for mango flowering in Mexico, when warm soil and environmental temperatures offer optimal circumstances for the trees to reach their full growth potential and flower output. An earlier flowering period this season has increased the likelihood of a lower domestic peak this year compared to past ones, which historically occurs in June. As a result, it is probable that the price will not decline by a significant amount towards the middle of the year, given the stable supply in the preceding months.
Local farmers and exporters are finding it cumbersome to overcome the manpower shortage in the field and the high cost of inputs this season. Despite this, mangoes continue to be an increasingly significant export for Mexico, mostly due to the diligence of farmers in terms of plant health, innovation, research, and productivity, as well as official policies that have fostered the opening of export markets.
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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.
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Written by: Sarah Ilyas