Ecuador - Country Commercial Guide
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Bilateral agricultural and related product (including biodiesel, forest, and seafood products) trade between the United States and Ecuador rose to $4.5 billion in 2022, with increases in sales for both countries.  The agricultural and related product trade balance remained significantly beneficial for Ecuador in 2022, increasing by four percent to a trade deficit of $2.9 billion for the United States.  This is primarily driven by an increase of shrimp exports, which represent 53 percent of agricultural and related products imported by the United States from Ecuador ($1.8 billion).  However, the trade deficit of just agricultural products decreased 12 percent to $825 million, representing a two-to-one trade ratio in favor of Ecuador.

Exports of U.S. agricultural and related products to Ecuador in 2022 totaled a record $741.4 million, up $165.7 million or 29 percent compared to 2021.  This growth was driven primarily by Ecuadorian demand for U.S. bulk, intermediate, and consumer-oriented products (mainly wheat and soybean meal).

Trade Data

Table 1: Total Agricultural Prodution: 2019-2023 (est)
In Millions (USD)20192020202120222023 (EST)
Total Ag. Production*$8,370,676$8,683,746$8,692,343$8,713,905$2.378,479 (T1)
Total Ag. Exports**$11,835$12,573$14,098  
Total Ag. Imports**$2,565$2,524$3,421  
Imports from US***$474$509$575$741,4$426
Exports to US***$1,106$1,271$1,437$1,543$913

*Total Agricultural Production: Central Bank of Ecuador (Valor Agregado Bruto Por Industrias, PIB).

**Agricultural Import and Export Values from SI3_AGG – AG Agricultural Products Sector. Data unavailable for 2022 and 2023.

***Global Agricultural Trade System (GATS): FAS Agricultural Total


Bulk Agricultural Products

Despite continued economic constraints, U.S. exports of bulk products increased 59 percent by value, which was principally the result of an increase in imports of wheat and cotton.  This growth is driven by Ecuadorian demand for U.S. bulk and intermediate products (e.g., wheat, soybean meal, and feed & fodders).

Table 2: Export Value in Bulk Agricultural Products (2022)

ProductU.S. Export Value (USD)Percent Growth 2021/2022
Total bulk products$168 million59%
Wheat$112.4 million55%
Cotton$30 million22%

Source: Ecuador: Agricultural Trade Between United States and Ecuador Reaches New Highs 03.02.2023


Growing opportunities in Ecuador exist for U.S. companies across all product categories that saw success in 2022, as well as others that were primarily impacted by economic and political constraints.  Other successful categories from last year were soybeans, vegetables, bakery goods, cereals and pasta, distilled spirits, other intermediate products, dairy products, beer, processed vegetables, pet foods, and fresh vegetables.


Intermediate Agricultural Products

Imports of U.S. intermediate products grew 23 percent thanks to soybean meal, feeds and fodders, and distillers dried grains with soluble (DDGS).  Imports of consumer-oriented products were up almost eight percent thanks to several categories that reached record numbers.  U.S. soybean meal reached a historical export value of $318 million, an 18 percent increase compared to 2021.  This increase has a direct relation to the growing shrimp production industry in Ecuador.  The growth of the feed meal and milling sectors in Ecuador also positively impacted trade, reaching records export values for wheat ($112.4 million), other feeds, meals, and fodders ($79.5 million), and DDGs ($22.9 million).

Table 3: Export Value in Intermediate Agricultural Products (2022)

ProductExport ValuePercent Growth 2021/2022
Total Intermediate Products 23%
Soybean Meal$318 million18%
Other Feeds, Meals, & Fodders$79.5 million26%
Distillers dried grains with soluble DDGS$22.9 million124%

Source: FAS Agricultural Trade Between United States and Ecuador Reaches New Highs 3-02-2022


Intermediate agricultural categories will continue to offer good potential into 2024.


Consumer-Oriented Agricultural Products

Ecuadorian imports of consumer-oriented food and agricultural products in 2022 reached US$ 1.1 billion.  Supermarket chains are the primary importers of food products with major supermarket chains accounting for 60 percent of total food sales.  Supermarkets allocate, on average, 18 percent of shelf space to imported goods.  Exporters of U.S. food and agricultural products should contact large importers or supermarket chains directly.  Imports and demand for imported food goods make up a large sector of Ecuadorian food consumption.

Table 4: Record Export Value in Consumer-Oriented Products (2022)

ProductExport ValuePercent Growth 2021/2022
Total consumer-oriented$1.1 billion15.8%
Bakery goods, Cereal, Pasta$9.5 million37%
Distilled spirits$8.4 million30%
Beer$5.2 million235%
Processed Vegetables$2.8 million74%
Pet foods$1.4 million88%

Source: FAS Agricultural Trade Between United States and Ecuador Reaches New Highs 3-02-2022

Table 5: Non-Record Export Value in Consumer-Oriented Products (2022)

ProductPercent Growth 2021/2022
Non-Alcoholic Beverages9%
Nursery Products41%

Cut Flowers

Poultry Meat and Products



Source: FAS Agricultural Trade Between United States and Ecuador Reaches New Highs 3-02-2022


Opportunities within the consumer-oriented product sector are numerous and growing.

Table 6: Best Consumer-Oriented Product Prospects

Product Category2021 Import Sales







Key Constraints

Over Market


Market Attractiveness

for USA

Fresh Fruits$ 111.1 million2.5% per annumChile benefits from lower tariffs and shipping proximity.

Rising demand for fresh fruits. U.S. export window is during Chile’s off -season.


Processed Fruits and Nuts$ 61.4 million5.1% per annum

Chilean suppliers
 benefit from long
 established relationships with local importers.


Demand is growing. Importers are interested in different types of
Chocolate$ 47.8 million10.7% per annum

Local production, especially of dark chocolate is up.


Un-met demand for product diversity. U.S. brands are well known.
Sugar Confectionery Products$34.7 million0.2% per annum

Colombia benefits from competitive prices and shipping proximity.


Growing demand for elaborate confectionary products. Local sugar prices are high.
Bakery Products,
 Noodles, and Pasta
$ 73.6 million6.7% per annum

Competitors include Andean Community and EU countries, benefit from trade agreements


Demand for specialized products that do not exist in the region.
Teas and Infusions$ 3.2 million6.8% per annumStrong local and EU competition.The United States is a traditional supplier of teas and infusions.
Processed Vegetables (mainly frozen)$ 38 million2.5% per annumLack of cold chain infrastructure. Quality misperceptions.

Shipping proximity. Nascent demand.



Condiments and Sauces$ 16.6 million14% per annumLocal competition at lower price

Quality and diversity of U.S. products


Precooked, ready-to-eat frozen mealsN/AImmature MarketLocal production increasing. Quality misperceptions.

Demand for greater product diversity and shipping proximity. Nascent demand.


Specialty Beers$ 24.4 million38.5% per annumLocal production. EU benefits from trade agreement.

Strong importer interest for alternative, non-pilsner beer styles.


Spirits and


$34 million24.4% per annumUK brands are well established. EU benefits from trade agreement.Strong demand for spirits. Shipping proximity. Strong interest in importing as bulk to be bottled locally
Dog and Cat Food$16.3 million7.2% per annumLocal competition by large feed corporations Demand for Specialized and high-end products not produced locally

Source: FAS Exporter Guide 12-16-2022