I despite the logistical problems due to the health emergency by the covid-19 , Ecuador did not fail to produce and exports grew in the first quarter of 2020.
A worldwide demand for food is quite high and habits have changed. “The trend now is to take care of the health and look for foods with nutritional value.” This is indicated by Verónica Chávez, Vice Minister of Export and Investment Promotion (ProEcuador). Due to this situation, phytosanitary and export safety measures were made more demanding in quality controls.
ProEcuador at an international level worked to promote the country and communicated to the world that traceability is maintained in star products such as shrimp and bananas.
It was communicated about the nutritional value, but above all that Ecuador complies with biosafety protocols , disinfection fences in all logistics and that it takes care of health, “both of employees and of the product we export. The packaging goes with all the security and standards required by law. “
Chávez explained that there is a trend for products known as superfoods, which correspond to Andean cereals, snacks and preserves .
In addition, in the quarantine the country had success stories in sales of bee honey with ginger , as well as chia and quinoa snacks , products that increase the immune system.
Cocoa being a commodity, its international price depends on its listing on the stock exchange . The pandemic caused the price to drop, however the export in volume remains.
At the level of processed cocoa products, chocolate improved its exports. “In moments of crisis or anxiety we consume more chocolate or coffee, ” says Chávez.
The exporting companies of chocolate bars ensure that increased their sales. In cosmetics , cocoa cream products such as lipsticks and creams are also developed.
The banana and shrimp were logistical problems, but not demand. Although the first quarter was good, in April the situation was complicated for many sectors. “We hope that with the opening and economic reactivation of other countries, exports will reach a balance, which will be gradual,” said the vice minister.
Virtual business and networking conference
From June 17 to 18, 2020, the first edition of the Virtual Business & Networking Wheel will be held , between Ecuadorian exporting companies and buyers and importers from the European Union.
The activity is part of the measures promoted by ProEcuador and Corpei, to support the export sector in the framework of the health emergency.
Valeria Rodríguez , director of Commercial Promotion at Corpei , explains that April exports were affected by logistical problems, but the global data is not yet available. “The business conference seeks to recover these markets, like the countries of the European Union .”
Cocoa farmers request loans to inject liquidity into agriculture
Francisco Miranda, president of Anecacao , stated that in the first quarter of 2020 production was excellent and the price exceeded $ 1,900 per ton.
But the pandemic caused a decline in the price and this brought the closure of exporters, logistical problems and delays in payments to farmers , among others.
The chocolate sector also had a significant decline due to low demand in restaurants, bakeries and patisseries . Slow recovery is predicted, Miranda notes.
The cocoa farmers seeking loans for exporters. They ensure that there is a decrease in supply. “We need capital to inject liquidity into producers.”
Regarding the contribution of companies and individuals announced by the President of the Republic , they indicate that it would be difficult to acquit them because the sector works according to future sales. ( I )