As one of the sweetest fruits around, dates are especially popular in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) area, grown in large quantities. Dates also play an important role in Islam. They are highly rich in fiber, minerals, and vitamins and are traditionally served during the holy month of Ramadan. It’s so enriched. Dates – found in hundreds of species – play an unforgettable role in the economies of many fertile crescent countries. In 2016, universal trade in dates, both fresh and dried, reached $ 1.4 billion, five times more than in 2001. It’s noticeable. In fact, in 2016, total date exports from the Middle East amounted to $ 1.12 billion, which is 77% of global amount of exportations. In this article, we will review the countries that send the most dates to all over the world. They are great providers of dates around the universe.
According to the World Food and Agriculture Organization, Egypt is the largest provider of dates globally, with about 17% of world production. Egypt accounts for less than 3% of world date exports despite high production. Much of the country’s agricultural infrastructure is industrially ready for date production, which is why Egypt can be one of the best climates in the world for date production and export. It’s part of every government to count on its budget.
The UAE is usually considered one of the top five countries in date exports in the world. The UAE’s climate is so suitable for date growth that dates can be grown almost anywhere. Dates are also one of the most common food products in the mentioned country. Talking about the statistics, we see the UAE is in second place with about 276,000 tons, and Iraq is in third place with 209,000 tons of exports. Considering the quantity of imports, the UAE is the second-largest importer of dates universally. The UAE was the second-largest importer globally, above Morocco, with imports of $ 119 million. According to the ITC Export Potential Map, the markets with the highest potential for date exports are in the MENA region, a famous place in the UAE. This small country has a well-equipped infrastructure for planting and exporting dates, distinguishing it from other countries globally. The Arab Free Trade Zone Agreement has also helped the country export quickly. It’s one of the most useful agreements in this respect.
The second country in our list is Algeria as another major exporter and producer of dates worldwide. In this country, placed in North Africa, dates have been used daily for nearly 5,000 years and have always been one of the largest producers of dates in the world because of the favorable climate. There are about 5,000 palm trees in Algeria, more than in neighboring countries like Morocco and Libya. The dates of this country are mostly planted in Biskra province and are very tasty and have nutritious. It’s so rich.
Talking about the most famous date of this country we should talk about Deglet Noor, which is famous worldwide and has a very high price. The fame of this golden date has made Morocco one of the top three countries in terms of date exports in 2017. It’s so delicious and rich.
Now it’s Iran’s turn. Iran is one of the largest exporters of dates in the world. Iran is a large country with a diversity of climate. However, arid and semi-arid desert areas have allowed dates to grow there. In 2016, Iran exported about $ 227 million worth of dates, or 16 percent of world exports. It’s really noticeable.
But in terms of volume, Iran is the largest exporter of dates with more than 321,000 tons. It shows the power of Iranian export companies that can export Iranian products to the world in the simplest possible way. The low price and, at the same time, the high quality of dates produced in Iran compared to other Middle Eastern countries is another reason for the high rate of date exports in Iran. Price and quality of the dates are not comparable at all.
It’s surprising to know that Iran is also one of the largest importers of dates in the world. In 2016, Iran imported $ 211 million worth of dates. Iran is the second-largest producer of dates with 15%, and Saudi Arabia is the third-largest producer with 14%. The method of planting and harvesting dates in Iran is mostly traditional. The amount of date production in Sistan and Baluchestan province with an annual production of more than 203 thousand tons of dates in the first and southern ranks of Kerman with 200 thousand tons, Fars with 162 thousand tons, East Kerman with 151 thousand tons, Bushehr with 150 thousand, Khuzestan with 148 thousand and Hormozgan with 140,000 tons are in the following ranks. These are famous Iranian provinces in terms of date production.
Various types of dates are cultivated in Iran, of which two types of dates, Mazafati and Pyarom, are world-famous. Mazafati dates are planted in the provinces near the Persian Gulf and are widespread, but the production volume of Pyarom dates is more scare, and for this reason, they are among the most expensive dates in the world. Though, they really worth it.
The last but not the least country in our list is Saudi Arabia which is also one of the very active countries in exporting dates. In recent years, this country has improved its orders to such an extent that it will be the largest exporter of dates in 2021 among Arab countries. The favorable climate of Saudi Arabia, which is mainly accompanied by arid deserts, has enabled it to produce large quantities of dates, such as Seghai dates. In 2021, the country could produce 7% of the world’s export dates. Saudi Arabia also has improved infrastructure for the production and export of dates worldwide, and the price of dates is lower than other Arab countries.
It can be concluded that countries importing dates are increasingly paying more attention to the quality, health, and safety of the food they eat. Ensuring the quality and health of export dates is a crucial issue for competition in the trade scene of this product is vital. As a result, date trading risk management planning for all those involved in the production chain to its export, from palm growers to sellers, distributors, transport companies, and exporters in the form of contract palm, is considered a basic need. As the world is going on and making improvement for sure this industry will soon find the best possible way to be the pioneer in Food Industry.