Securing Avocado Shipments: The Avocado Export Powerhouse
Mexico is the leading global player in avocado production and export, contributing a substantial 47.5% share of the world’s avocado exports, amounting to a remarkable value of £2.81 billion in 2022. Among these exports, more than one million tons of avocados found their way to the United States, as reported by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development. Of the 57 avocado-producing countries, the other major producers are Dominican Republic, Peru, Colombia, and Indonesia.
The summer supply of avocados in Europe is dominated by Peruvian producers with an abundant supply of Hass avocados. South Africa and Kenya have overlapping supply windows. In the European winter, Spain, Colombia, Mexico, Chile, and Israel take over. Supply gaps are becoming smaller due to increasing global production and only leave room for suppliers that meet high retail standards.
The Complexity of Avocado International Export Shipping
Efficient cross-border transatlantic shipping of avocados from Mexico to EMEA involves complex supply chains spanning vast distances. However, the lack of transparency hampers communication and visibility, leading to increased risks of damage, reduced shelf life, and financial losses. Furthermore, the high demand for avocados makes them susceptible to theft, particularly in the absence of traceability, resulting in potential losses in the market.
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Avocado Supply Chain Handling and Hazards
As the tasty fruit offers up its green gold, the transport process becomes a make-or-break moment, where improper handling could spell financial ruin. Imagine the disappointment of a perfectly ripe avocado turning into a mushy mess due to mishandling during transit. This underscores the importance of mastering the art of shipping to keep avocados at their freshest.
When supplying avocados to Europe, make sure the supply chain is well organised. This means you must have a cold chain right after harvest and organise transportation. Poor infrastructure such as bumpy roads can damage the fruits and high temperatures will shorten their shelf life. The avocados may still look great when you load them into the container, but your buyer will see quality issues. When this occurs, the loss is almost always for the exporter.
Avocado Cold Chain
One critical factor lies in temperature. Maintaining the sweet spot between 4.4°C and 12.7CF is key, as avocados react sensitively to temperatures beyond this range. The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Mission to the EU stands as a guiding sentinel in this endeavor, offering temperature recommendations that ensure avocados retain their pristine quality.
If it is too cold, the fruit can suffer chilling injury, the flesh of the fruit goes brown, and the skin shows sunken spots. External chilling injury is generally initiated by temperatures of <3°C. If it is too hot, it can become overripe or contract anthracnose disease, which reduces the quality and makes it unfit for human consumption.
Avocado Supply Chain Packing and Handling
Packing avocados unveils another layer of the cargo security puzzle. This process holds the power to make or mar their condition upon arrival. The practice of palletized shipping is essential as it improves handling and protection by mitigating the risks of damage. Using fiberboard boxes, it is important not to pack the avocados too tightly or too loosely because both occurrences can cause bruising.
Ethylene, the unseen influencer in the world of fruits and vegetables, adds yet another layer of complexity. The presence of ethylene-producing produce like apples and grapes can accelerate the ripening process of avocados, requiring careful consideration in mixed cargo scenarios. With avocados and ethylene emitters sharing the same truck but not the same container, the delicate balance of ripening speed becomes an orchestration of logistics.
Layered Food Security & Condition Monitoring
In an ever-changing world, ensuring the safety of your produce shipments is of utmost importance. Our approach begins with a thorough assessment of the value, significance, and potential risks associated with each shipment’s route and delivery location. By doing so, we develop a strategic layered security game plan to effectively mitigate potential threats or losses from temperature and mishandling.
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With a well-executed layered security plan in place, you can rest assured that your shipments will be effectively protected, monitored, and documented with our TrackSecure platform providing exception alerts throughout the entire journey. Combined with TydenBrooks’ proven ISO 17712 high security cable and bolt seals, you significantly reduce the vulnerability of attacks.
Our supply chain security teams believe in promoting cargo security awareness and fostering collaboration with your company’s stakeholders to create a robust cargo security policy. Together, let us enhance your cargo security, ensuring your shipments reach their destinations safely and your business thrives with peace of mind.
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Frequently Asked Questions
Mexico primarily produces Hass, Criollo, and Fuerte avocados, with Hass dominating the landscape.
Maintaining the temperature between 4.4°C and 12.7°C is essential to prevent chilling injury or overripening of avocados.
Ethylene-producing produce like apples and grapes can accelerate the ripening process of avocados when transported together.
Palletized shipping is essential to protect avocados from damage during transit
TrackSecure and ISO 17712 seals provide robust security measures to protect avocado shipments from theft and damage.