EghtesadOnline: As the biggest pistachio producers in the world, Iran and the US have always had close rivalry in the production and export of the expensive nut.
According to Iran Pistachio Association, the two countries account for 85% of world production of pistachios (dry in-shell basis).
With the trade war heating up between the US and Europe, it could affect the Iranian economy in some ways. Iranian pistachios were banned from EU markets in 1996 due to high aflatoxin contamination levels. Since then, Americans managed to dominate most of Europe’s pistachio markets.
However, according to Mohsen Jalalpour, the former head of Iran Chamber of Commerce, Industries, Mines and Agriculture, things seem to be changing in Iran's favor, according to Financial Tribune.
The full translated text of his article recently published in ICCIMA's official website follows:
Trade war between the US and Europe is escalating and we’re witnessing new restrictions imposed by both sides every day. Whatever happens, it might affect the Iranian economy as well.
The number of commodities both Iran and the US export to Europe is not high, but pistachio is the most important one. Recently, Europe has set tariffs on American almond and hence other almond exporting countries will gain a chance to enter the European markets.
Twenty years ago, Iranian pistachio exports into Europe were banned after Iran’s relations with some European powers soured. Subsequently, Americans took over the European market from Iranian traders.
At present, there are rumors of Europe increasing tariffs on American pistachios. If it comes into force, Iran can resume pistachio exports to Europe after 20 years.
Previously, European countries annually consumed around 90,000 tons of Iranian pistachio, but currently the United States accounts for three-fourth of Europe’s pistachio imports.