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Agriculture Industry. An investment opportunity in Panama

Panama seeks to establish itself as the new global player, focusing on crops with high margin of comparative advantages, while increasing the capacity of the crop throughout the entire country. It has currently initiated the reconversion in the use of its existing soils towards new crops with greater potential yield on the investment and a high worldwide demand. Panama also develops the suitable infrastructure (for example, irrigation systems, cold chain network, regional roads, etc.) that may allow the continuous growth of the sector.

A more stable climate, humidity conditions, optimum winds and sunny days contribute to the growth of products of excellent quality, among these: Pineapple, Cantaloupe, Watermelon and Special Coffees. In addition to this, the incomparable advantage that the geographical location of Panama represents provides a magnificent telecommunications and logistic services platform. The production costs of the Panamanian agriculture industry are very competitive at a regional level.

The Panamanian pineapple is highly appreciated due to its high brix grade (between the averages of 14.5 and 15.5) and its adequate level of acidity, surpassing the minimum requirements of the international markets. Likewise the Panamanian cantaloupes and watermelons enjoy the preference of the main markets.

The principal export destinations of the Panamanian fresh fruits are Europe (Holland, Spain, United Kingdom, Italy and Belgium) and the United States.

The growth strategy of the agriculture industry sector was based on five initiatives: the extension of the irrigation system, the construction of production and access roads, the development of a cold chain, the political restructuring of the incentives and assistance, and the creation of a commercialization institution (PROINVEX).

One of the best success cases in the Panamanian exports activities are the special coffees that with low production volumes and thanks to its high quality, in regards to our neighbors in Central and South America, has been during the recent past years well recognized worldwide in the five continents, achieving record prices per pound in sales as is the case of Japan where the pound of Geisha coffee is sold at US$ 170.00.

This is because our country produces, promotes and commercializes its production of special coffee on the basis of exquisite and selected varieties such as Geisha, Typica, Caturra, Catuay, among others. Likewise, the business model promotes the three technically advanced models but with traditional practices of the Panamanian coffee which are Lavado, Natural and Honey.

Currently there are some 11 thousand Hectares of coffee [+27,000 Acres] of coffee planted throughout the entire country, with a production that this year amounted to 156 thousand 746 qq (100-pound units), of which 20% is exported as special coffee.

Therefore, for a long time Panama will be considered as one of the best qualified and most valued special coffees of the world, where each cup will give us a special character full of aroma, taste of fruit with a long lasting effect thus making our coffee one of the best special coffees of the world.