Russia imported 7 million tons of fresh fruit and vegetables last year, 1.5 million tons less compared to the years before president Putin’s import ban, Fresh Plaza reports.
This volume still makes Russia the third-largest importer of fresh fruit and vegetables in the world, with the United States and Germany occupying the first and second place.
Russian imports of fresh fruit and vegetable have seen a recovery in recent years. That was after the country introduced a ban on food products from the European Union in 2014. However, in 2019, these imports declined again, official data shows. Compared to 2018, four percent fewer fruit and vegetables were imported.
The import of fresh vegetables remained at the same level as in 2018. Last year, however, fresh fruit imports shrank by five percent. Notably, the ever-growing banana imports came to an end. There was a sharp decline in the import of apples, pears, and peaches/nectarines. These fell by 17, 16, and 15%, respectively.
Mandarins are the second most imported fruit in Russia, with imports of this citrus fruit reaching an all-time high last year. Avocados and mangos were fruits the imports of which increased in 2019.
Of the countries that export to Russia, Ecuador is the largest, as a banana supplier. It is followed by Turkey and China. Imports from China shrank by no less than 10% in 2019, which brought an abrupt end to the trend of growth Chinese fresh fruit and vegetable imports, official data shows.