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FRESH APPLES. World production for 2020/21 is projected down 3.6 million tons to 75.9 million

25.06.2021 17:17 "Agro Perspectiva" (Kyiv) According to the report of the USDA Fresh Apples, Grapes, and Pears:World Markets and Trade (June 2020), world fresh apples production for 2020/21 is projected down 3.6 million tons to 75.9 million on a severe spring frost significantly affecting Chinas northwest provinces. Trade is also forecast down on lower exportable supplies in the European Union and United States.

China production is estimated lower by 1.9 million tons to 40.5 million on a severe spring frost in northern provinces that affected flowering. Although total production is down, higher volumes of lower grade fruit are expected, boosting shipments to price‐conscious Southeast Asia markets and lifting exports to 1.1 million tons. Imports are projected over 30,000 tons lower to 70,000 as COVID‐19 led to logistical disruptions, generating more cautious buying from importers.

EU production is expected to rise over 500,000 tons to 12.2 million as greater supplies from an on‐year in non‐commercial orchards more than compensates for losses in weather‐affected commercial orchards. Exports are projected down 135,000 tons to 880,000 on fewer commercial supplies, while imports are also expected lower to 460,000 as reduced shipments from Eastern European suppliers more than offsets supplies from the Southern Hemisphere.

Turkey production is projected to surge nearly 700,000 tons to 4.3 million despite some hail in Kayseri and the largest apple production province of Isparta. Overall good growing conditions and plantings of new varieties coming into production are expected to generate a sixth straight year of growth. Higher supplies are expected to boost exports nearly 30 percent to 270,000 tons, especially to Russia and India.

U.S. production is projected down more than 360,000 tons to 4.5 million as lower yields, wildfires, and a windstorm reduced output in Washington, and a severe freeze reduced output in Michigan. USDAs National Agricultural Statistics service (NASS) surveyed industry and updated U.S. production in the May 2021 Noncitrus Fruits and Nuts 2020 Summary report. Exports are expected to fall more than 100,000 tons to 750,000 as lower supplies reduce shipments to most export markets. Imports are anticipated to make a slight recovery from last years record low, rising to 115,000 tons. Gains from Canada and China will more than offset reduced shipments from Southern Hemisphere suppliers.

India production is anticipated to contract slightly to 2.3 million tons on lower output due to variable temperatures, low water supplies during flowering, and hail during fruit‐bearing. Quality is also affected by an apple scab outbreak in Himachal Pradesh, the second largest producing state. Imports are projected to surge 90,000 tons to 285,000 mostly on elevated shipments of competitively priced fruit from Iran. Fruit from China has been banned since May 2017, and imports of U.S. apples have fallen nearly 50 percent following the imposition of a 20‐ percent retaliatory tariff in June 2019. However, the number of countries supplying apples to India doubled from 14 to 28 between 2013/14 and 2018/19 and has remained above 20 since then, with Turkey and Afghanistan gaining market share since 2019/20.

Russia production is anticipated to see a decline of 240,000 tons to 1.5 million after 2 years of strong growth as spring frost and hail impacted commercial orchards while non‐commercial orchards experienced an off‐year. Commercial orchards continue to be improved as planting area expands with new orchards, and high‐density plantings of new trees occur in older orchards. Despite lower output, imports are expected lower to 615,000 tons on drops in shipments from Moldova and Serbia.

Chile production is expected to ease 19,000 tons to 1.1 million as lower summer temperatures, severe January rainfall, and limited labor due to COVID‐19 restrictions negatively impacted yield. If realized, this will mark a third straight year of declines. Reduced output is expected to pressure exports lower to 650,000 tons.

South Africa production is projected to rise for the third straight year, reaching 966,000 tons as output gains resulting from good weather and water supplies are only partially offset by damage from hail in the Langkloof region. Growing area continues to expand with new cultivation in the Northern Province that includes plantings of new «low chill» varieties that thrive in warmer temperatures. Higher supplies are anticipated to lift exports to a near‐record 530,000 tons.

Mexico production is estimated at 680,000 tons, down 80,000 predominantly on adverse weather in Chihuahua during fruit‐development. Growers continue to expand acreage, with additional plantings especially in Chihuahua, Durango, and Zacatecas. The new plantings in Chihuahua include new high‐density orchards. Despite lower production, imports are expected to contract slightly to 250,000 tons as stocks from last season lessen demand.

New Zealand production is projected to contract 48,000 tons to 543,000 following last years record. Hail caused severe damage in the Nelson and Otago regions, cooler summer temperatures impacted fruit size, and severely reduced labor resulted in fewer orchard picks, all combining to bring output to its lowest level since 2016/17. As a consequence, exports are like‐wise anticipated to drop to 2016/17 levels, falling 56,000 tons to 345,000.

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