A truckload of avocados crosses the border into the US every six minutes
No matter which team takes home the trophy at the Super Bowl this Sunday, the Mexican avocado will be a big winner.
A truckload of the fruit known colloquially as “green gold” is leaving Mexico for the United States every six minutes in the lead-up to the National Football League championship game, according to estimates from the Mexican Association of Avocado Producers, Packers and Exporters (APEAM).
The association expects the volume of avocados sent across the border in January to exceed the 110,900 tonnes exported in the same month last year, the newspaper El Financiero reported.
January exports of Mexican avocados to the United States increased more than 300% between 2010 and 2019 and currently account for about 10% of annual shipments to that country, statistics show.
Mexico, or more precisely Michoacán – it is the only state with authorization to export to the United States – dominates the U.S. market, providing 87.6% of all avocado imports to the country to enjoy a market share of around 80%.
With per capita annual avocado consumption in the United States increasing from about 0.7 kilograms in the year 2000 to 3.6 kilograms in 2018, according to University of California agricultural economist Hoy F. Carmen, the market is an extremely lucrative one for Mexican producers and exporters.
Super Bowl Sunday, when millions of Americans prepare guacamole to enjoy during the game, is especially good for sales.
Matt Lally, associate director of market research firm Nielsen, said the popularity of avocados in the United States has increased due to the fruit’s “creaminess and versatility,” a Mexican cooking boom and growing demand for healthy foods.
“While consumers are looking for options for healthy fats, avocados will reap the benefit,” he said.
Among the companies that are cashing in on the demand by exporting Mexican avocados north are Del Monte, Mission de México, Grupo West Pak and Sar Quality Avocados.
The Super Bowl, however, is not just an opportunity for more than 28,000 Mexican growers and 62 packing and export companies to sell more avocados in the United States in January and early February.
For the past six years, APEAM’s marketing division has promoted its product during the U.S. broadcast of the event in quirky commercials that conclude with the association’s trademark “Avocados from Mexico” jingle.
To be shown during the second quarter of Sunday’s game, this year’s ad features American actress and singer Molly Ringwald and promises to be just as unconventional as those screened in recent years.
The “Avocados from Mexico” YouTube channel has already released two teasers of the commercial, which show Ringwald pampering an avocado she intends to eat by placing a mini tiara on it, and traveling in a car alongside one that has a neck pillow placed around its top.
APEAM’s marketing chief Álvaro Luque said that promoting Mexican avocados to 112 million Super Bowl television viewers in the United States is an opportunity that producers and exporters “couldn’t let pass this year.”
Sunday’s game between the Kansas City Chiefs and San Francisco 49ers will be played in Miami, Florida, and kicks off at 5:30pm CT.