`Despite Production Woes, Spain Anticipates Expanding Organic Exports to China - Olive Oil Times

Despite Production Woes, Spain Anticipates Expanding Organic Exports to China

By Máté Pálfi
Jun. 22, 2023 14:59 UTC

Spain’s old­est organic cer­ti­fi­ca­tion body has signed a deal with its Chinese coun­ter­part to increase Spanish organic exports to the world’s sec­ond-largest econ­omy.

The Andalusian Committee of Organic Agriculture (CAAE) signed an agree­ment with China Organic Food Development and Certification, which the for­mer said would enable access to this mar­ket.”

Juan Manuel Sánchez Adame, man­ag­ing direc­tor of CAAE, said the agree­ment rep­re­sents open­ing a new busi­ness avenue for organic pro­duc­ers.

See Also:Demand for Organic Olive Oil Growing Globally

According to the CAAE, China’s organic mar­ket has expe­ri­enced remark­able growth. In the past 15 years, China went from being the twenty-sev­enth largest con­sumer of organic foods to the fourth, with a mar­ket value exceed­ing €11.3 bil­lion.

This coin­cides with ris­ing organic olive cul­ti­va­tion in Spain. According to data from the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, the num­ber of organic olive groves – 256,510 hectares – rose by 16 per­cent from 2021 to 2022. In 2021, Spain pro­duced about 296,400 tons of organic olives for oil pro­duc­tion.

The CAAE pre­dicts demand for organic prod­ucts in China will con­tinue to rise, with the country’s grow­ing mid­dle class drawn to their trace­abil­ity and health ben­e­fits.

The com­mit­tee also sees grow­ing inter­est in health­ier fats from China’s younger con­sumers, fur­ther dri­ving the demand for organic olive oil.

As con­sumers are more and more con­cerned about health, the demand for mid­dle and high-end extra vir­gin olive oil is also increas­ing,” said Cathy Jiang, gen­eral man­ager of La Vida Mia, an orga­ni­za­tion that pro­motes prod­ucts from Spanish-speak­ing coun­tries in China.

This year, we will increase the pro­mo­tion of Spanish olive oil, hop­ing to cap­ture more mar­ket share,” she added.

According to state-run media, China imports about 92 per­cent of its olive oil from Spain. Despite all the logis­ti­cal and macro­eco­nomic chal­lenges of recent years, Spanish olive oil exports to China have increased steadily.

According to trade data from the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, Spain exported 42,765 tons of olive oil in all of its frac­tions to China in 2022, more than dou­ble the amount of olive oil shipped from Spain to China just ten years ear­lier. However, exports fell to 2,994 tons in the first three months of 2023.

While exports are unlikely to rise for a sec­ond-con­sec­u­tive year due to Spain’s poor har­vest, Teresa Pérez, gen­eral man­ager of the Spanish Interprofessional Organization of Olive Oil, told local media that pro­duc­ers are deter­mined to main­tain their foothold in the lucra­tive Chinese mar­ket.


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