Canned pineapple production in Thailand to remain stable. The pineapple processing industry in Thailand is about to enter the peak season this month. Canned pineapple prices have finally reached a comfortable level that allows both growers and processors to make a living.
Boom-and-bust cycles are well known in the pineapple business; they occur periodically when supply and demand are out of balance due to a disastrous crop or lack of interest in growing pineapple due to low raw material prices. The industry was dealing with extremely high prices and shortages during 2015 and 2016; then the trend finally turned around in 2017: prices started to come down and reached the bottom by the end of the year. Packers have finally caught up with orders and started to built up inventories to a healthy level.
Our sources don’t expect the prices to change much in the near future; the summer crop looks decent and the raw material prices have stabilized. On the long run though there are hints about shortages for the winter crop as some growers are switching to other crops because they aren’t happy with the current prices. “Normal” fresh pineapple prices (about 5-6 Baht per kilo) are considered rather low compared to the previous 2-3 year highs (as high as 13-14 Baht per kilo), resulting in some farmers’ turning away from pineapple cultivation or paying less attention to their plantations. This practice is common and will affect the yield of the winter crop.
Our packers believe that this is a good time to contract for canned pineapple for spread shipment as they expect the market to firm up later during the year.