The EU pear crop for 2019/20 is expected to be down 13% to 2.46 million tons, according to FAS EU data. Production is estimated to be down in all production areas except for the Iberian Peninsula and the Czec
h Republic. The EU’s largest pear producer is Italy (511,000 tons), where the crop was 30% smaller than in 2018/19. Production area in Emilia Romagna (Italy’s main growing region) is shrinking by 2-3% each year. Italy was also hit by heavy rains in the early growing season. As a result, Italian fruit size is expected to be smaller than in recent years. The main variety grown in Italy is Abate Fetel.
In contrast, pear production area continued to grow in the Netherlands (10,101 hectares) and Belgium (10,354 hectares), where Conference is the main variety produced. However, low temperatures in the Netherlands during flowering mean that overall volumes will be down there by 6%. Belgium’s crop is set to be 10% smaller, mainly due to hailstorms and some sunburn. The Spanish pear crop is expected to be up nearly almost 5% to 307,000 tons (mainly Conference) due to favourable growing conditions throughout the season. Size and taste are expected to be good.