Almost 10,000 tons of citrus could be exported from Uruguay to the U.S. this season, the first full season of imports from the country.
An estimated 8,818 to 9,921 tons of Uruguayan fruit is slated for U.S. markets, according to a report on the website Elobservador.com.uy.
Uruguay is expected to produce about 385,802 tons of citrus this year, comparable to a typical year but 49% more than last year’s frost-damaged crop, according to the report.
The first container shipments of satsumas are expected to leave Uruguay in late April, according to the report. They will be followed by clementines, and later navels and valencias.
The first-ever shipment of fresh citrus from Uruguay to the U.S. arrived at South Philadelphia’s Packer Avenue Marine Terminal Nov. 18.
In July, the U.S. Department of Agriculture published a final rule allowing the importation of Uruguayan citrus. The effective date for the rule was Aug. 9.
Uruguay exported about 100 tons of citrus to the U.S. last year, according to the USDA’s Foreign Agriculture Service.