Chilean food and agriculture is one of the most dynamic industries in the domestic economy and its contribution to the GDP is estimated to be around 4.7%.This industry generates around 368,316 direct jobs in Chile.Exports from the Chilean food and agriculture industry are significant, representing the main non-copper export industry for Chile, with around 970 different products shipped to over 170 destinations. The largest target markets for Chilean food and agriculture exports are The United States, China and Japan.
The Chilean food and agriculture industry is dynamic and flexible, adapting to consumer demand with attributes such as quality, traceability, and safety. The industry is highly recognized and valued in international markets and its progress in innovation and sustainability only further strengthen its global standing.There are approximately 27 subsectors associated with exports in the food and agriculture industry.
ProChile has prioritized 11 of these to boost their international promotion, specifically wine, pisco, fresh fruit, seafood, meat, bee products, dried fruit and nuts, niche wines, organic products, food innovation, and farm service providers.
Farm service providers are known for their contribution of technologies for the efficient use of available resources in the agricultural supply chain and permanent adaptation to changes in the food industry and global consumer demands.
This industry is in a constant state of adaptation and growth that reflects the demands of consumers worldwide and follows strict innovation parameters in farming, production, and manufacturing, using technology, modern export logistics, and infrastructure.
It offers a wide array of services for the development of agriculture and agroindustry in Chile, contributing to the leadership and knowledge that can be seen in Chilean food and agriculture exports. This area offers machinery and equipment, supplies, irrigation systems, seeds, plant and tree nurseries, ICTs, consulting and advice, etc.
The far south of Chile has pristine waters and unique geographic and climatic characteristics. Combined with strict industry standards, this makes Chile an exceptional place for the seafood industry. Its success is the consequence of multiple factors and decisions on a countrywide level: Chile’s business expansion over the last few decades, policies that are favorable to enterprise and production, consolidation and international expansion from the public sector, and the hard work of the private sector. All these factors have made Chile a global leader in the supply of seafood.
The subsector is divided into two important areas. The first is aquaculture, or fish farming, which is the third largest, billing over $ 4.5 billion USD per year and employing over 45,000 people. It is subject to the strictest national and international certification standards in terms of quality, occupational health and safety, food safety, and the environment. Its development has primarily been driven by the salmon industry and mussel farming. The second is fishing, where the main resources harvested are anchovies, sardines, and mackerel, which in more than 85% are intended for human consumption. The south Pacific hake, southern hake and southern blue whiting are also common in industrial fishing, along with deep water resources, such as cod, Patagonian grenadier, and crustaceans, such as yellow and golden prawns. The Chilean seafood industry mainly exports frozen, canned, fresh, and live seafood.
Our country produces a wide variety of food, which has unified the industry as one with highly skilled human capital and cutting-edge technology that adds value to products. Today’s consumer sets high standards, demanding food that, in addition to tasting good, is also nutritious, healthy, and offers physiological benefits. This has opened a space for the development of innovation in this industry in Chile.
Chile is developing a product catalogue that includes fortified food, processed with components that are beneficial to one or more physiological human functions; food and drinks for specific dietary restrictions, which have been designed specifically to exclude one or more components; functional ingredients, which are active ingredients, which when added to food are beneficial to health; specialized additives, which add a particular benefit to the final product, such as preservation, texture, better color, heightened flavor; and food supplements, designed to support the organism to meet nutrient needs and complement the consumption of proteins, vitamins and minerals.
A production chain of 454 beehives generates a wide range of bee products in Chile. Close to 90% of Chile’s honey production, originating primarily from melliferous species in native forests, is exported to markets in the European Union and the United States.
Honey is the main livestock product exported by Chile and is subject to programs that determine traceability, safety, and quality and guarantee that it meets the requirements of target markets.
Chilean honey and other bee products have been the subject of studies that accredit the nutraceutical values and health benefits of honey with monofloral origins, such as Ulmo and Quillay, which are considered to be health foods.
Honey is the main bee product export and is mostly exported in bulk. Smaller formats are also exported, and both traditional and organic honey is available. Live products, such as queen bees and packets of bees are also exported to international markets.
The dried fruit and nut producer and exporter industry is an important industry for Chilean agriculture. It directly and indirectly generates around 30,000 jobs in both rural and urban areas. It is also relevant for its contribution in most of the regions of the country, with a wide diversity of products and farming communities.
This industry contributes to the growth of non-copper exports and grew a 2.4% from last year. Chilean hazelnuts, chestnuts, almonds, and walnuts (shelled and unshelled) are the main nuts exported, and prunes and raisins represent the largest share of dried fruit exports. Chile is the third largest exporter of shelled walnuts and raisins in the world.
Chile has 15 wine valleys across almost 1,500 kilometers, 356 vineyards, 1.3 billion liters of production, and 194,116 planted hectares, representing 85% of the planted surface area in the country. It has an attractive and diverse global offering and high added value, with niche wines, independent wines, small productions, natural, organic, and biodynamic wines, as well as traditional wines that are already well known throughout the world.
The Chilean wine industry has a unique identity that reflects its vast and complex territory. This diversity is displayed in products that contribute more than just value added to the bottled product. This diversity can be seen in a wine that reflects a respect for the environment and local communities, part of our culture, history, and heritage.
The priority today is on niche wines, which are not mass produced like traditional wines. They are high quality, have high added value, and primarily target the hospitality industry -hotels, restaurants and cafés, and specialty stores.
This niche includes small and medium wineries in the near north, central, and central-southern valleys, extending from the Atacama Region to the Araucanía Region. Specifically, the Huasco, Elqui, Aconcagua, Casablanca, Maipo, Cachapoal, Colchagua, Maule, Itata, and Malleco valleys.
At the very core of Chile’s roots, Pisco is a premium spirit made from distilled wine. It can be white or clear in color, it is young and versatile and can be distilled from one to three times, left to rest for a maximum of six months in inactive wooden barrels or steel tanks. It can also be aged in active wooden barrels (rauli, oak, holm oak) for at least six months. Pisco is ideal as a digestive liqueur, due to its wood and grape aromas.
This spirit is the outcome of the hard work of over 2,800 pisco grape producers in the Atacama and Coquimbo regions, the only two regions with approved Denomination of Origins.
The Denomination of Origin for Pisco dates to 1931. It is the oldest in the Americas and the third oldest in the world. This regulation adheres to the strictest quality standards for pisco production, which are maintained to this day. Our high-quality Pisco and its dedicated producers have been awarded at the most important and prestigious international competitions.
Pisco is sold in 35%, 40%, and 43% bottles and comes in both clear and aged varieties. This national emblematic drink has gradually been gaining ground, awards, and recognition in diverse markets, thanks to its quality and versatility.
Poultry production in Chile leads the meat industry, followed by pork production, consolidating this area as one of the main Chilean agriculture and livestock industries. Beef production comes in third, followed by mutton.
The geographic conditions in Chile and its strict adherence to phytosanitary and zoosanitary regulations keeps the country free from diseases such as foot and mouth disease.
Beef exports mainly include deboned frozen and refrigerated beef, other bone-in cuts, deboned beef, tongue, and prepared meals. Mutton exports include frozen bone-in cuts, bone-in leg of lamb, frozen bone-in shoulder, other boned cuts, and carcass or half-carcass. White meats include different cuts of pork and poultry, mainly chicken and turkey.
Our fruit grows at the far edge of the world, protected by unique natural barriers, the Atacama Desert to the north, the Pacific Ocean to the west, the Andes Mountains to the east, and the Patagonia ice fields to the south. Rich in taste and diversity, Chilean fruit is available year-round to be enjoyed at the dinner table, in school snacks, and in restaurants around the world.
Chile exports more than 100 different fruit species, such as apples, blueberries, citrus, cherries, grapes, kiwi fruit, oranges, plums, and pears. Chile is the largest fruit exporter in the southern hemisphere and the largest global exporter of blueberries, cherries, table grapes, and plums.
Our country is a globally recognized supplier due to its reliability and compliance with international food safety standards.