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Chinese Taking Over the (Pecan) World?
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1/31/2013 10:48:09 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
Attracted by their perceived health benefits, the Chinese are gobbling up pecans from the United States in record amounts. Last year saw a staggering 64% jump in pecan exports to Hong Kong, according to the latest numbers from the Southern United States Trade Association.
The trend started a few years back. In 2007, the price of walnuts -- previously a favorite in China -- spiked. So the Chinese went searching for a more affordable nut. They found the U.S. pecan, which accounts for 80% of worldwide supply.
"They literally took suitcases of money with them into the orchards," said Daniel Zedan, president of Nature's Finest Foods, an Illinois-based broker and marketer of tree nuts.
The strategy worked. Last year over 20% of U.S. production went to China, said Zedan -- exports with a cash value of over $140 million, according to SUSTA. Next year Zedan expects China to buy nearly a third of the country's pecans.
But this new market is keeping the price of pecans high, both for U.S. consumers who buy the nut whole and U.S. and European food companies that use them as an ingredient.
Several U.S. food makers have chosen to cut back on the use of pecans, Zedan said, either curtailing production of things like butter pecan ice cream or substituting in other nuts.
Within 5 years, the Chinese have been able to make a rather large material impact on this market.
Thoughts and comments?
At 8/9/2013 9:41:24 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
If you are civil with me, I will be civil to you. If you decide to bring unreasonable animosity to bear in a reasonable discussion, then what would you expect other than to get flustered?