Blueberry Imports Decreased in 2023

Clint ThompsonBlueberries

Blueberry import volumes dropped in 2023, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture Economic Research Service Situation and Outlook Report.

Fresh blueberry import volumes decreased 15%, down to 559 million pounds in 2023 from 657 million pounds in 2022. It marks the first decline in volumes since 2017. Import volumes in the latter half of last year were down 29% compared to the same timeframe in 2022.

Approximately 65% of the fresh blueberries available for consumption in the U.S. are imported every year. It is a major increase from 45% in the 2000s and a reason Georgia and Florida producers have advocated for assistance from the federal government.

Approximately 88% of fresh blueberry imports originate from three countries: Peru (43%), Mexico (29%) and Chile (16%). El Niño weather patterns negatively affected production in Peru and Chile. Volume from Peru dropped 25%, while Chilean blueberry volumes declined 26%.

Fresh organic imports also fell 18%, marking its first decrease since 2016.