Asian Pineapple Market - The Philippines Emerges as the Main Exporter

Tropical And Subtropical Fruits August 17, 2018
Author: Sergey Avramenko
Head of Global Markets Research Team

IndexBox has just published a new report "Asia: Pineapples - Market Report. Analysis And Forecast To 2025". Here is a summary of the report’s key findings.

Pineapple Consumption Continues to Increase Gradually

In 2017, the Asian pineapple market grew to 11.7M tonnes, increasing by 5% over the last year. After a gradual decline from 2007 to 2010, the volume of consumption bounced back in 2011 and continued to increase gradually through 2017, with only mild fluctuations in certain years. The rapid growth in the Asian population and consumer incomes constituted the key drivers behind the increase in the demand for pineapples.

In wholesale prices, the expansion of the market was more pronounced, surging from $2.3B in 2007 to $4.1B in 2017 (IndexBox estimates). This figure reflects total revenue of producers and importers (excluding logistics costs, retail marketing costs, and retailers’ margins, which will be included in the final consumer price). Over the last ten years, the market value increased with an annual average growth rate of +5.8%.

Asian Pineapple Market

The Philippines, India, China, Thailand, and Indonesia – the Largest Countries in the Asian Region – Account for over 80% of the Pineapple Consumption

The countries with the highest consumption were the Philippines (2.3M or 20% of total consumption), India (2.1M tonnes or 18%), China (1.8M tonnes or 15%), Thailand (1.7M tonnes or 15%) and Indonesia (1.6M tonnes or 13%). The remaining consuming markets together comprised near 19% of Asian consumption. 

The highest annual growth rates of pineapples consumption from 2007 to 2017 were recorded in China, with +6.8% growth, India and the Philippines, with +4.5% and +2.9% growth, respectively. Consequently, China (+6 percentage points), India (+5 percentage points) and the Philippines (+3 percentage points) strengthened its share in terms of the Asian consumption from 2007 to 2017. By contrast, shares of Thailand declined strongly from 28% in 2007 to 15% in 2017.

Amongst the leading consuming countries, high levels of per capita consumption were recorded in Thailand (24.7 kg/year in 2017) and the Philippines (21.8 kg/year), which was significantly higher than the world average of 1.5 kg/year. In these countries per capita consumption stood at relatively stable levels (in the Philippines) or even declined notably (in Thailand). India (1.6 kg/year) and China (1.2 kg/year) had the lowest volumes of pineapples consumption.

Consumption of Pineapples in Asia Will Continue to Grow at a Moderate Pace

A pineapple is a staple tropical fruit for Asian consumers, therefore, no significant changes in its consumption are expected. Most of pineapples are consumed fresh in producing countries. At the same time, there is a wide diversification of processed pineapple products, like canned pineapples, pineapple juice, jams, citric acid, beverages etc. 

The huge populations of China or India consume a significant part of the locally produced fruit, exports from these countries are insignificant. The largest producer of the region, the Philippines, exports 14% of its pineapple output, while the share of exports in other countries’ production volume is negligible. Exports account for only 4% of the regional market volume, indicating that almost all of the pineapples grown in Asia are either consumed domestically or used for processing. Majority of the processed pineapples are exported. The Asian region exports about 89% of the total volume of canned pineapples. Pineapple processing industry (mostly production of jams, regular juice and juice concentrates) is mostly developed in the Philippines, Thailand, India, Indonesia and China, thus dominating the Asian supply. The Philippines export a large volume of processed pineapples. United States, European Union, Canada and Japan are the main importers of canned goods. These factors encourage Indonesia to develop its own processing industry to be able to export canned pineapples.

The growing popularity of healthy eating habits contributes to the growth in demand for fruits and vegetables, including pineapples. Pineapples are not only delicious but offer an array of nutritional benefits. 

Thus, the increase in the population of the region, the popularisation of healthy eating along with the growth of the processing industry in Asia, supported by the ever-rising Asian demand for food products, will contribute to the growth of the pineapple market in Asia in the medium term. 

Consumption of pineapples in Asia is forecast to continue its upward consumption trend, growing with a CAGR of +1.6% for the seven-year period, which is projected to bring the market volume to 13.3M tonnes by the end of 2025.

Indonesia and the Philippines Are the Best Options for Sourcing Pineapples

The Philippines, India and Indoneasia are the most promising markets to source pineapples. India and the Philippines emerged as leaders in terms of production volume. Indonesia had the lowest export prices which were still declining. The export price in the Philippines was the second lowest and had a growth rate close to zero. Apart from that, Indonesia possessed the highest yield among the other countries which was still growing.

In Indonesia, a potential buyer would enjoy low and declining export prices. The export of Indonesia is lower than that of the Philippines, but the growth rate is higher. Exporting pineapples from the Philippines would be more expensive, but the overall amount available for export is larger than in Indonesia.

Japan, China and Iran are the most promising overseas markets for pineapple exports Japan, China and Iran are the most promising markets for exporting pineapples. Those countries are among the top pineapple importers in Asia. Japan had the highest import volume, but negative growth rate. Apart from that, those three countries had the highest import prices which were expected to grow further, thereby securing potential for increased supplier revenue. 

Production of Pineapples in Asia Increased Slightly

Production of pineapples in Asia amounted to 11.6M tonnes in 2017, which was 0.4M tonnes (or 4%) more than the year before and 1.4M tonnes (or 14%) more than the outset level. Overall, production expanded with a CAGR of +1.3% per year over the last ten years. In value terms, production stood at $4.0B, estimated in producer prices.

The Philippines Is Leading in Pineapples Production in the Asian Region 

The Philippines was the key Asian pineapple producing country with an output of about 2.7M tonnes in 2017, which accounted for 23% of total Asian output. In the Philippines, production levels increased by +2.9% annually from 2007 to 2017, largely attributed to the growth of harvested areas. Pineapple is one of the most important crops in the Philippines. Globally, the country ranks third, second only to Costa Rica and Brazil in terms of output. 

The other major producers in Asia were India (2.1M tonnes), Thailand (1.7M tonnes), China (1.6M tonnes), Indonesia (1.6M tonnes), Taiwan, Chinese (0.6M tonnes) and  Vietnam (0.5M tonnes), together making up another 70% of total Asian pineapple production. Most of the other major producing countries showed growth of pineapple output in physical terms. In 2007-2017 annual growth rates were especially high in China (+5.9%) and India (+4.5%). Thailand (-4.8%) was the only major producing country with an annual decline of pineapple output, while the remaining countries experienced a modest annual growth of production.

At the moment, pesticides use is one of the most complex and contradictory problems faced by pineapple growers. In order to ensure high pineapple yields alongside with export-level quality, chemicals are heavily used in the production cycle. In the Philippines, pesticides, fertilizers, and herbicides are all used for this purpose.  With 27% of the total chemicals consumption, plantation crops are second only to rice in the volume of pesticides, fertilizers, and herbicides used. Reducing their use can present a serious threat to crop stability. While in the U.S. organic agricultural practices, which exclude using chemical inputs, are gaining popularity, this trend is not typical for Asia yet.

In order to meet the growing demand of its Asian market, Dole Philippines (Dolefil) plans to expand production area by another 12,000 hectares.

Asian Pineapple Market Is Independent of Imports

From 2007 to 2017, the share of imports in consumption did not exceed 5%, and it is not likely to increase significantly. Due to the low trade intensity, imports should not be regarded as strong factors influencing Asian pineapple market dynamics in the medium term.

The Philippines Is the Largest Pineapples Exporter in Asia

In 2017, the volume of Asian exports totalled 467M tonnes, remaining relatively stable over the last year. After a noticeable decline in 2008-2009, exports intensively recovered, reaching the highest level in 2014, with a slight downward correction within the next three years.  In value terms, exports totalled $412M, a 3% less compared to the highest level of export value achieved in 2016.

The Philippines (382K tonnes in 2017) was the main regional supplier of pineapples with a share of 82% of Asian exports. Sweet taste and a relatively short time from producer to consumer makes pineapples from the Philippines popular on the global markets. 

From 2007 to 2017, exports from the Philippines grew by +2.7% per year. Taiwan (27K tonnes) held the second position in the structure of regional exports, with 6% share, followed by Malaysia (5%), Thailand (2%) and Indonesia (2%). Among these countries, Indonesia (+32.8%) and Taiwan (+44.7%) were the fastest growing exporters over the last ten years. While the share of Taiwan (+6 percentage points) and Indonesia (+2 percentage points) increased from 2007 to 2017, the share of the Philippines and Thailand (-2 percentage points, each) demonstrated a contraction. The shares of the other countries remained relatively stable throughout the analysed period.

Despite being the largest Asian producers of pineapples, India and China did not export much of their production, meaning that it was consumed domestically. The Philippines exported only 14% of its own output, while exports of other major producers (India, China, Thailand and Indonesia) were under 1%.

Japan, China and Korea Were the Main Importers of Pineapples in Asia

The volume of Asian imports totalled 567K tonnes in 2017. Imports surged by 16% over the last year, which was due to the growth of all of the major suppliers. In value terterms, it also showed a consistent upward trend, accounting for $470M in 2017.

In 2017, Japan (157K tonnes/$126M) and China (146K tonnes/$146M), constituted the leading destinations of pineapples imports, comprising 28% and 26% of regional imports, respectively. They were followed by Korea (14%), the UAE (6%), Singapore (4%), Saudi Arabia (4%) and Iran (3%). The remaining countries together made up 15% of total imports. From 2007 to 2017, most of these suppliers experienced a strong growth of imports: China (+32.3% per year), Saudi Arabia (+21.8% per year), the UAE (+14.7% per year) and Iran (+14.2% per year). China strengthened its share from 3% in 2007 to 26% in 2017. 

China is an attractive market for pineapples. Besides producing pineapples domestically in the country’s southern Hainan province, it imports pineapples from the Philippines and Taiwan. Last year’s typhoons in Taiwan diminished yields by 10%, especially impacting top quality fruits, causing a price hike. This forced China to open its markets to Costa Rica. Four companies received exporters accreditation. In the opinion of Costa Rica’s growers, the opening of the Chinese pineapple market does not present a need to expand the area under plantations, which is currently around 43K ha.

The UAE (+4 percentage points), Saudi Arabia (+3 percentage points) and Iran (+2 percentage points) also increased their shares in the total import structure, while the shares of Japan (-25 percentage points) and Korea (-10 percentage points) declined considerably.

Asian Pineapple Market

Do you want to know more about the Asian pineapple market? Get the latest trends and insight from our report. It includes a wide range of statistics on

  • pineapple market share
  • pineapple prices
  • pineapple industry
  • pineapple  sales
  • pineapple import
  • pineapple export
  • pineapple market forecast
  • pineapple price forecast
  • key pineapple producers

Source: Asia: Pineapples - Market Report. Analysis And Forecast To 2025