FoodPhilippines, through the Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions (CITEM), steps up its campaign in European countries, especially as the Philippines looks to maximize trade opportunities under the EU-GSP+ (Generalized System of Preferences Plus). The FoodPhilippines presentation will highlight coconut, banana, and tuna products in its participation to SIAL Paris on 16-20 October 2016 at the Paris Nord Villepente.
Citing a press report from the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) in 2015 that EU-GSP+ increased Philippine exports increased by 27 percent, CITEM Executive Director Rosvi C. Gaetos shares that coconut oil, canned tuna, and preserved fruits are included in the major export products under the zero tariff scheme.
“We are going to take advantage of this momentum in the Philippine export industry by highlighting top quality products like coconut, banana, and tuna through the participation of 15 companies in SIAL Paris, the largest food innovation exhibition,” Gaetos states. “Tuna especially poses higher export potential because the world is starting to recognize that one of the best tunas in the world comes from the Philippines.”
According to government data on Philippine agricultural exports in 2012, coconut, banana, and tuna are constantly included among the top six export commodities from 2004-2010, with the Netherlands as one of the country’s biggest export markets. CITEM expects that these three food export commodities will benefit greatly from the zero tariff as the rate will go down from 20 percent for tuna, and 10 percent for coconut.
The Philippines is a major exporter of coconut products, particularly coconut oil. The country exports over 70 percent of its coconut oil, with Europe having 52 percent and United States receiving 33.9 percent of the trade, according to the United Coconut Associations of the Philippines (UCAP).
UCAP notes that coconuts are gaining popularity in the UK retail market, with coconut oil now worth over Lsd 14 million per year in sales, and coconut water worth almost Lsd 60 million in value sales, as reported by IRI’s InfoScan data. The same market analysis data also reported that the coconut trend is playing out in other European countries as well, with its increased popularity attributed to Thai-inspired food, and the its health benefits.
Banana is also one of the country’s major fruit exports, comprising 86.9 percent of the total volume in metric tons of fruit exports from the Philippines in 2013. It constitutes a substantial portion of the country’s export revenues. The Cavendish variety, in particular, topped the export statistics for fresh fruits as it surpassed the USD 1B mark in 2014, posting a growth of 18.06 percent from USD 962.58M in 2013 to USD 1.136M last year. Processed banana products are also gaining strong foothold in both local and international markets.
The Philippines ranked 7th among top fish-producing countries in the world in 2013, comprising 2.46 percent of the total world production of 191 million MT. In 2014, tuna, along with seaweeds and shrimp/prawn, accounted for 65 percent of the total export value worth USD 1, 274 million. Tuna is still the country’s top fish export commodity, with export value at USD 443 million. Canned tuna in particular constituted the bulk of export tuna products.
Coconut, banana and tuna are part of the Premium 7 food group that is considered as the Philippines’ key export drivers in the food industry given that these products considered to be among the best in the global market or manifest high export potential. Also included in the Premium 7 are pineapple, cacao, coffee, and mango.
The Philippines participation in SIAL Paris is spearheaded by CITEM, the export promotions arm of the Philippines Department of Trade and Industry (DTI). FoodPhilippines is a branding initiative of DTI-CITEM that unifies the promotional efforts of the government in overseas trade exhibitions and events to project one brand, one image, one voice. For more information, please visit www.citem.gov.ph.