This morning I saw the interesting news release “GSP: Sleeping Bags and Tropical Fruit.”  It was posted last week on the website of iTi Tropicals in Lawrenceville, New Jersey, which sources tropical fruit juice, puree & concentrates from South America and Asia.  The title of the news release caught my eye because who, after all, ever thinks about how sleeping bags affect the price of tropical fruit products?

Apparently, people in the tropical fruit business do.  According to the article, GSP expiration:

“has significantly increased the cost of almost every product iTi Tropicals imports (emphasis added)…Up to this point iTi Tropicals has not increased pricing as we fully expect that GSP will be reinstated and that it will be done so retroactively.  If this is not the case, inevitably we will have to increase pricing.”

These increases could be significant, as GSP saved importers of fruit pastes and puree more than $3.6 million in 2010.  Thailand was the top supplier of these products under GSP, followed by the Philippines, Colombia, and even Turkey.  Savings on mango/guava products alone – my personal favorite – were nearly $350,000.

In addition to educating its customers about GSP, kudos to iTi Tropicals for doing its research.  It’s press release includes references to the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, the Cato Institute, and our own Coalition for GSP website.  Keep up the good work!