US consumers are losing their taste for canned foods, according to Euromonitor International.

As Business Week reports, while the recession gave lower-cost canned foods a reprieve, the long-term trend has been a steady decline in retail sales of canned, jarred and otherwise preserved foods. The theory is that consumers perceive canned foods as less healthy than fresh. As the economy recovers, they are willing to pay the premium for fresh fruits and vegetables.

We checked our trade data and found evidence that the trend is playing out in US imports. For example, the data shows the volume of canned pineapple imports has flatlined over the last five years, while fresh or dried pineapple import volumes have climbed.

5 Year Trend US Imports of Pineapples Canned versus Fresh or Dried

 There’s a trend within this trend – compare the sources:

Sources' Share by Volume of US Imports of Fresh or Dried Pineapple 2012


Sources' Share by Volume of US Imports of Canned Pineapple 2012

The data shows that the trend toward this fresh fruit, at least, and away from the canned preparation is a clear gain for south-north trade from Latin American near-sources over transpacific trade from Asian sources.

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