Costa Rica: Barriers to the Dominican Avocado

Delays of up to 23 days are being reported for carrying out the processes to register and bring in the first two shipments of avocados from the Dominican Republic.

Friday, December 16, 2016

Costa Rican importers and government officials have denounced the fact that the Dominican Republic took 23 days to process the first shipment that arrived in the country via Puerto Limon, and 20 days for the second shipment.

The Dominican ambassador in Costa Rica, Octavio Lister, said that "... in the United States the process takes up to three days and in Europe one day. But if you want to compare that with something closer, continued the diplomat, in El Salvador the processing time is three days and two days in Panama."

"...The complaints were backed up by the Chamber of Exporters and Importers of Perishable Producers, as some of its members are importing this fruit from the country from the Caribbean. Randall Benavides, president of the chamber, explained that this variety of Dominican criollo avocado is a little more perishable than the Hass varieties. 
This characteristic of the fruit itself means that if it is kept for a long time in the dock and in the fiscal warehouse it ripens and that forces it to be sold quickly or lost."

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More on this topic

The Avocado Paradox

February 2018

Almost three years after the beginning of the restriction of avocado imports from Mexico, citing supposed phytosanitary issues, the Solis administration is now promoting exports of Costa Rican varieties of the fruit, while the local market suffers from shortages.

The Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock announced with great fanfare that it has started an advice giving program to a group of Hass avocado producers in Tarrazú, so that they can start to export the fruit to European countries.

Avocado and the High Cost of Protectionism

February 2017

In Costa Rica since the government suspended imports of Mexican avocados in May 2014, the average wholesale price of the fruit went up by 19% in 2015 and 16% last year.

Since the country stopped the imports of mexican avocados because of the alleged presence of the sunblotch plague, the price of this fruit in the local market has kept on rising. Although avocados are now imported from seven different countries, total imports have fallen 25% since then, and the average price has recorded since then an annual increase of 18%.

Costa Rica: Disguised Protection of Local Avocados

September 2016

The delay in phytosanitation studies by the Ministry of Agriculture has stalled the process for starting imports of avocados from the Dominican Republic.

Even though it has been a month since the Chamber of Exporters and Importers of Perishable Goods asked to be able to start the process of importing avocados from the Caribbean island, a delay in carrying out a study on the part of the State Phytosanitary Service (SFE) has prevented this from happening.

Costa Rica: A Year Without Mexican Avocados

May 2016

As expected after any government intervention in a market, the price consumers pay for the product has increased and a black market has been created, encouraging smuggling.

And the Costa Rican State itself risks having to pay millions in compensation for convictions for failing to comply with the procedures established by the WTO after blocking imports of avocados from Mexico.

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