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    Poland Leads the World in Blueberry Consumption

    Estimated reading time: 3 minutes

    Polish people consume an increasing amount of blueberries, making Poland the global leader in blueberry consumption growth, according to the International Blueberry Organization (IBO)!

    Blueberries in Poland are considered superfruits and have become a symbol of healthy eating. Leaders of the IBO, including Peter McPherson – Chairman, Cort Brazelton – Executive Committee Member, David Hughes – Prof. em. of Food Marketing at Imperial College London, and Dominika Kozarzewska – Board Member of the Polish Blueberry Promotion Foundation and coordinator of the Polish Berry Core Team, discuss the Polish model of market development and industry prospects worldwide.

    Blueberry consumption in Poland reached an impressive 1.83 kg per person in 2022. This surpasses the consumption level in the United States, the home of blueberries, where it stood at 1.78 kg per person.

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    Consumers in Poland eagerly consume Polish blueberries

    “This is one of the greatest successes of the past decade in the industry worldwide. When I was in Poland 10 years ago, the main topic was export. Within a decade, you have developed consumption at a phenomenal level. This is something other countries should emulate, and something you should be proud of.”,

    said Cort Brazelton, Executive Committee Member of the IBO.

    “It is good to maintain a balance between export and domestic consumption, as well as processing. If you manage to maintain this balance, producers will have the world at their feet.”,

    said Peter McPherson, Chairman of the International Blueberry Organization (IBO).

    Data on blueberry consumption was presented during the global industry meeting in Lublin from July 3-6, 2023. The IBO Summit materials state, “Poland shows us an attractive example of how to take care of the domestic market and develop exports. It is our duty to learn from this lesson.”

    “You should share and promote blueberries. You produce excellent blueberries that are very well received in the European market. I come from the United Kingdom, and we eagerly consume Polish fruits.”,

    reminded Prof. David Hughes.

    The world is beginning to discover and consume more blueberries

    “Next year, global blueberry production will reach 2 million tons. The USA and Canada still remain important regions, but they account for less than 50% of global blueberry consumption. Europe and Asia are growing rapidly. We believe that other countries should pay attention to what Poland has achieved and take it as an example.”,

    summarized Cort Brazelton.

    Blueberries are becoming the favorite superfruit worldwide, and simultaneously, their production in Poland is growing dynamically. Since 2022, Poland has been the largest producer of dessert blueberries in Europe.

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    Polish blueberries are in demand worldwide

    Today, Poland ranks sixth as a blueberry producer worldwide. Over the past 3 years since 2019, production has increased by over 60%. In 2023, production increased by 25%, the highest percentage increase in production worldwide.

    “Poland has a unique position when it comes to producing high-quality blueberries. The weather in Poland during the harvesting season greatly favors the fruit’s quality, which is a significant advantage.”,

    said Cort Brazelton from the IBO.

    Polish consumers appreciate the quality of blueberries grown in Poland. Blueberries are perceived as a superfruit and an export success in Poland. According to Kantar research, 7% of Poles believe that blueberries are a hallmark of Polish agriculture.

    Polish growers see building domestic demand as the foundation for industry development and their growing export opportunities. They have focused on creating a habit of regular consumption in their promotion efforts. The communication includes a strong element of “eat locally,” but there is also a parallel message from the berry industry, “eat healthily every day.”

    Advantages and the Polish model of market development:

    • 50 years of experience in highbush blueberry cultivation
    • Favorable climate and excellent fruit taste
    • Transformation in line with market expectations: replanting, new varieties, producer integration
    • State-of-the-art infrastructure
    • Promotion of consumption

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    Data source and analysis: Agronometrics Global Trade Data. The presented data will be included in the IBO Global State of the Blueberry Industry Report, 2023. The methodology for calculating per capita consumption in Poland involves adding total domestic production and imports and subtracting exports. The resulting figure is divided by the population. The obtained result represents the amount of fruit remaining in the country and provides a basis for comparison with other countries.

    The IBO Summit in Lublin was organized by the Polish Blueberry Promotion Foundation, in partnership with the Polish Blueberry Growers Association and the National Association of Fruit and Vegetable Producer Groups. Both projects are funded by the Fruit and Vegetable Promotion Fund and carried out under the honorary patronage of the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development.

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