Growers would not have exported any avocados to the U.S. this year if it weren’t for the APHIS decision to allow the fruit into the U.S. without undergoing a cold treatment, he added.
Gritters said he expects to see small to medium-size fruit from Chile during the early part of its season, while Peru will be shipping larger fruit.
“I’m sure we’ll be using both,” he said.
Donovan said the Peruvian deal shouldn’t have a major effect on the U.S. this year.
“It shouldn’t affect anyone too much during mid-August to mid-September, but it will touch everyone,” he said.
Looking ahead to 2012, Donovan said it’s likely that, with a crop expected in the 350-million to 400-million-pound range, California will be competing with Peru for the U.S. market from May through September. Early shipments from Chile and Mexico probably will be later than they were this year.
“The U.S. market will have four distinct supply sources — two spring and summer (California and Peru) and two fall and winter (Chile and Mexico),” he said.