World Avocado Association: the Avocado’s Water Consumption is Proportional to its Incomparable Nutritional Value

Thanks to the latest innovations, the avocado reinforces its close relationship with the environment through advances that allow the growth of one kilo of this superfood using an average of 600 liters of water

No other food offers the same nutritional value for the per-liter amount of water used in harvest.

Avocado contains vitamins C, E, K, B1, B2, B3, B4, B5, B6, and minerals iron, zinc, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, folic acid, and copper

The avocado has become the superfood of the twenty-first century thanks to its various benefits and nutritional properties. Technical improvements in the avocado harvest within recent years have allowed substantial reduction in its water footprint. Present in all types of diets, ranging from that of an athlete to someone with high cholesterol or diabetes, no other food offers the same nutritional value for the per-liter amount of water used in growth and harvest.

The water consumption involved in avocado production has been optimized in recent years, according to the World Avocado Organization (WAO). Currently, the amount of water necessary to produce one kilo of this superfood varies between 600 to 700 liters. Technical improvements in irrigation as well as careful plant-growth control have reduced this figure by between 300-400 liters within the last decade.

The current quantity of water may appear to be high, but compared to fruits such as bananas (790 liters) or apples (822 liters), the amount of water avocados require ranks lower than the average within the fruits and vegetable market1. Concerning grains, rice requires 2,500 liters for every kilo produced. As for foods of animal origin, such as chicken and beef, the respective amount of water used reaches as far as 4,325- 15,415 liters, according to studies from the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IME).

A look into the avocado harvest around the world

The avocado is a fruit that adapts to different climate zones throughout the entire world. In fact, a large proportion of the zones where it is grown, such as Colombia and Mexico, have high percentages of precipitation and do not require irrigation on plantations. The majority of commercial farms in South Africa use efficient irrigation systems, and in dry zones, farmers use unique techniques to water their crop. For example, Israeli farms use desalinated water, and Peruvian farms irrigate with meltwater from the Andes. In fact, Peru works directly with Food Bank in a program dedicated to educating communities on how to sustainably farm avocados.

“The cultivation of avocado plantations has been made environmentally friendly thanks to the strong commitment to R&D made by the sector in recent years. Not only are natural water resources used, which can come from both rain and meltwater from the Andes in Peru, but also efficient irrigation techniques and careful plant-growth control at all stages of the fruit´s ripening have been used to provide the necessary amount of water at all times,” stated Xavier Equihua, CEO of WAO.

Avocados are as unique in nutrients as they are sustainable
Recommended for all types of diets due to its various nutritional properties, no other food offers the nutritional values provided by avocado per liter of water used in production. For every 100 grams of avocado, the energy contribution is 167 kcal, 485 mg of potassium, 73.23 g of water, 52 mg of phosphorus, 29 mg of magnesium, 12 mg of calcium, in addition to vitamins A, C, E and K. Following the examples of fruits taken above, the banana or apple respectively has an energy contribution of 90 and 52 kcal.

If we take into account the tomato, the vegetable that needs the least amount of water for its production, the nutrients it provides are minimal compared to the avocado. Tomato production requires few water resources, but the energy contribution is not proportional. Rice provides more nutrients than tomatoes, but the amount of water it needs is high. The only food that provides many healthy nutrients to the body and consumes sustainable water levels is the avocado.

Avocado is a cholesterol-free fruit so its consumption contributes to the reduction of cholesterol in the blood, which makes it an ally to maintaining a healthy heart. Its antioxidant power is good for the eyes, while the presence of vitamin K helps prevent osteoporosis, among many other benefits for the body.

“The avocado is a unique food, it has no competitor. Its high concentration of nutrients helps those of all ages. From babies to adults, all can take advantage of the benefits that the fruit of life brings,” explains Equihua. “The uses of the avocado are increasing due to its versatility in terms of consumption.”

Reports on water consumption per litre produced by the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IME) and data from the Water Footprint Network

About WAO:
WAO, an international non-profit organization founded in 2016, represents the main producers, exporters and importers of avocados in the United States, Mexico, Colombia, Spain, Peru, Zimbabwe, South Africa, Tanzania and Mozambique. WAO promotes avocado consumption thanks to its nutritional values and recognized health benefits.

In addition, WAO is present in Spanish on the following channels:
Facebook: @aguacatefrutadelavida
Instagram: @aguacatefrutadelavida