Blueberries harvest statistics from Chile in the middle of january 2012
A rather moderate harvest pace has been registered in Chilean blueberries this week in comparison to last week, as high temperatures receded, leading to lower exports during Week 2, reaching 4,588 tons. However, major volumes are still being destined to the frozen industry compared to last year, mostly because quality of the last fruit of some varieties being harvested in the central-south zone does not qualify for exports.
Regarding future harvests, average activity is foreseen in the VII and VIII Regions, as unusually high temperatures are no longer being reported. Meanwhile, a faster harvest pace would probably persist in the IX Region and south, as the heat accumulation difference continues to increase regarding last season. According to the Chilean Blueberry Commission producers have faced the current harvest pace well, this foresees that orchards will be handled easily during this second stage of the season, considering that fruit looks firms with large sizes.
Exports progression reaches 58% regarding the estimate, which totals 73,986 tons, and the Chilean industry has therefore already advanced to the second half of the season.
Exports during Week 2 decreased to 4,588 tons, while regarding the previous 6 weeks, volumes reached more than 5,600 tons. With volumes exported during Week 2, shipments totaled 43,246 tons, a 1.5% difference compared to the estimate.
It should be mentioned that late varieties are already neing harvested in the South-
Central Zone and all producing areas in the South have started. This situation change in varieties seems favourable, especially because good fruit size has been seen.
The degree-days accumulation registered up to last week in the VII and VIII Regions remains stable. This means temperatures have not been higher than the average ranges during this time, and harvests would end with a moderate pace in these regions. However, the difference continues to increase in the IX and X Regions, rising by 21% and 34% regarding last year. This points out that harvests will remain shorter than during an average year for fruit left to be harvested in these regions.
North Zone (IV - V REGIONS)
Harvest ended during Week 51.
Cenrtal Zone (METROPOLITAN-VI REGIONS)
Activities are over in the Metropolitan Region, while pickings would end during this week (Wk03) in the VI Region.
South Central Zone (VII-VIII REGIONS)
VIII Region. Early and mid season varieties have already been harvested. Only some producers continue to harvest Rabbiteye and Tifblue. Progression reaches 50% for Brigitta and 30% for Tifblue in Linares. Some Brigitta is left in Parral, but nearly all volumes are being destined to the
Brigitta and Legacy show 70% progression in the VIII Region. Rabbiteye is
close to 50%. High Brigitta volumes continue to be destined to the frozen
industry up to last week (Wk02), as high temperatures were reported during
previous weeks. However, fruit looks more firm this week and a lower
proportion of blueberries are being diverted to frozen.
South Zone (IX - X - XIV REGIONS)
IX Region. Varieties show a similar situation to the VIII Region, with some of
them being delayed. Brigitta and Legacy show 50% progression on average,
though a significant dispersion is seen, as some producers which are further
behind only register about 25% progression. Rabitteye reports about 30-
40% progression. Good fruit quality is seen. Some producers would start
harvesting some Elliot late this week, yet the bulk of activities is foreseen
during next week. There is almost no Duke left. Temperatures remain very
high, and harvest pace is still active. Good fruit quality and sizes are
X and XIV Region. Harvests of Brigitta and Legacy show 30% to 40%
progression, with fruit reporting good quality. These varieties would reach
their peak during this week and next one (Weeks 3 and 4), though some
producers have already ended their activities. Bluecrop is close to 70%
progression, and fruit would be harvested about two times more. Elliot has
not started yet, but is expected to slowly begin during next week, becoming
more significant by Week 6. A good harvest pace has been seen during this
year, due to good weather conditions. Duke is nearing its end, showing 90%
progression and some quality problems, which is usual during the end of the
season. Elliot would begin during this week (Wk03) in Valdivia, next week
(Wk04) in Rio Bueno and the week after that (Wk05) in Osorno.