The imports of Moroccan tomatoes from the European Union have increased by 26% since 2016, according to new data from Eurostat, reported by Fepex.
Over the same five-year period, EU fruit imports from leading players like the Netherlands and Spain actually fell, down 5% and 20% respectively.
Tomato exports from the Netherlands to the EU amounted to 844,022 tonnes in 2016, while in 2020 they reached 803,278 tonnes. Spanish exports increased from 763,844 tonnes to 613,053 tonnes.
In contrast, European imports of Moroccan tomatoes increased from 344,094 tonnes to 435,041 tonnes, Eurostat noted.
“The data reflects the decline in sales of Spanish tomatoes in the EU, its main destination, largely due to competition from Morocco, whose presence is increasing in the EU market,” said Fepex.
“But they also show, according to Fepex, that such competition also affects other producing countries such as the Netherlands, which is why a trade policy which supports Community preference is becoming more and more urgent.”
Other notable suppliers of tomatoes to the EU include Belgium, which exported 195,718 tonnes to the block in 2020, France with 193,536 tonnes and Turkey, with 125,622 tonnes.