Non-traditional crops exported from Jamaica have begun to show signs of improvement with the country’s national fruit — ackee — leading the charge.Ackee exports from Jamaica rose to their highest level in 2016 to total roughly US$20 million, up from the US$4.4 million the country totalled back in 2000 when it broke into the US market.
The trends are expected to continue this year as global consumers increase their search for ackee, rum, coffee and jerk seasoning.
According to the Jamaica Promotions Corporation (Jampro), ackee export is expected to grow to US$21.1 million by the end of this year and US$29.25 million by 2020. Statistics from the Jamaica Exporters’ Association (JEA) also show that the demand for the local crops have increased in numbers over the last five years.
The growth trend shows that while consumers are using traditional trade methods to purchase local products, there has been an increase in consumers searching for local products online.
“In February 2012 for every person searching for Jamaican jerk, four persons searched for rum, eight for coffee and 40 people searched for ackee, according to Google Trends. Fast-forward to this February and ackee searches continue to dominate at 59 searches for every eight for coffee and rum; and three for jerk,” JEA stated on its website.
Published in the Jamaica Observer
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