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Sea-crossing flavor

The avocado, a fruit known for its taste and nutritional value, has managed to cross borders never before thought possible. Now, Colombia is recognized in international markets as a producer of quality avocado.

According to figures delivered by the National Association of Foreign Trade (ANALDEX), in 2018, Colombia exported 30,008 tons of fruit, equivalent to $52.9 million.

Among the main destinations of the Colombian avocado are the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, Spain, Belgium, France, the United States and Germany.

For the avocados to pass through these borders and reach their destinations, container transport by sea is a popular method.

Transport of containers via sea, due to transit times, is an alternative that must have refrigerated storage for products requiring a particular temperature for their preservation, usually at low temperatures.

In the case of the Hass avocado, its preservation requires different temperatures depending on the ripening stage of the fruit. Between 4°C and 8°C is required for the start of the season, and from 4°C to 5.5°C for the harvested fruit, which is at the end of the season.

For the transport of avocados via maritime, it is necessary to take into account some observations that were made by Rafael Del Solar, Sales Manager of Hamburg Sud in Peru at the webinar of transport of avocados via maritime. Here are some of them:

-It is necessary to preempt the fruit as soon as possible from the moment of harvest and place it in environments free of ethylene at optimal temperature levels.

The quality of the Hass variety is reduced after three to four weeks of storage. Maintaining quality fruit for a period greater than six weeks is a challenge.

Avoid the exposure of avocado to temperatures less than 3°C to prevent excessive cold damage.

Avoid transit times that are close to the same length as the total shelf life of the product.

The condition of the fruit before being packed has a fundamental role in the arrival condition. It is essential that the fruit to is of good quality and treated properly before being sent.

Even if the best-refrigerated technology were used for transport, this would not improve the quality of the fruit.

Learn more about the avocado industry at the 9th World Avocado Congress to be held in Medellin from September 23rd to 27th.

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