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US apple and pear exports total $ 994 million

Exports of apples, pears and quinces from the United States totaled $ 994 million in 2020, a decrease of 12.1% year-on-year.

Although they may vary from year to year, US apple and pear exports account for a significant portion of production.

While the majority of US production is for domestic consumption, export markets are an important sales channel for US industry.

In 2019, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) estimated that approximately 18% of American apples were exported.

Among the main destinations for exports of apples, pears and quinces in 2020 were: Mexico (310 million dollars), Canada (209 million) and Vietnam (63 million).

According to the International Trade Commission (USITC), the United States is one of the world’s largest producers of apples and pears, with a combined annual US production valued at more than $ 3 billion.

Apple exports

Although the United States is a major supplier to a variety of export markets, US producers have cited that the Maximum Residue Level (MRL) in the European Union has contributed to a substantial decline in US exports there. 

An MRL is the highest level of residues of a given pesticide on a given crop that is legally tolerated in the jurisdiction of a government.

The European Union, which had previously been the United States’ third-largest apple export market, has markedly reduced its imports of pears and apples from the United States in recent years (from $ 20.9 million in 2012 to $ 2.2 million in 2020), so it is no longer a primary destination for these fruits.

Subsequently, apple and pear growers have moved exports to less restrictive MRL markets and conducted pre-export tests to limit the likelihood of MRL violations.

Although Mexico is the second largest export market in the United States for agricultural products, the United States exporters of the crops in question did not identify challenges with the Mexican MRLs.

Mexico reportedly often harmonizes its MRLs with the United States MRLs, and very few challenges with the Mexican MRL regulatory process were identified or reported by industry stakeholders.

In most years, about half of America’s pear production is exported, although this can range from 20 to more than 50 percent.

Since 2010, U.S. apple, pear, and quinces exports had totaled more than $ 1 billion


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