Thai durian exporters face threat from Vietnam, the Philippines in China
Thai durian growers have been urged to maintain the high quality of their fruit because they face a growing threat from rival exporters in Vietnam and the Philippines in the lucrative Chinese market.
The warning was made by the director-general of the Department of International Trade Promotion, Phusit Ratanakul Sereroengrit.
Phusit said a report from the trade promotion office in Nanning, China, showed that wholesale prices of durians in China dropped early this month.
The price of durians in China dropped at the beginning of May mainly due to a surge in supply of the fruit after Chinese wholesalers increased imports from Vietnam and the Philippines, the report said.
At the beginning of this month, the prices of Thai mon thong durians fell to between 36 and 48 yuan (177 to 266 baht) per kilo.
The price of mon thong durians from Vietnam ranged from 32 to 41 yuan per kilo, while the price of puyat durians from the Philippines ranged from 37 to 45 yuan per kilo, the report said.
The price of Thai durians rebounded to 52-58 yuan per kilo by the middle of May mainly because it was the end of the harvest season in eastern provinces, the report said, adding that declining exports of Thai durians sparked rising prices for them.
“Although competitors of Thai durians increased in China, the impact is still not serious,” Phusit said, adding: “But Thai exporters should maintain the quality of durians until they reach the hands of buyers to maintain their good image and increase our competitiveness.”
Last year, China imported 825,000 tonnes of durians worth US$4.03 billion, with 94.55% (780,000 tonnes) coming from Thailand.
According to the report from Nanning, the import of durians through the border checkpoint near the city in southern China rose this year.
From January to March, a total of 61,000 tonnes of durians were imported through the border checkpoint, and in April 60,000 tonnes were imported through the checkpoint.