Downgrade of New Zealand’s apple and pear estimates in wake of cyclone

Tue 28/03/2023 by Richard Wilkinson

The cyclone that hit New Zealand’s North Island in mid-February wreaked such damage that apple and pear crop estimates have been revised downwards by over 20%. The New Zealand pipfruit crop is now estimated at 16.1m cartons (18kg tray carton equivalents), down 21% on the original January crop estimate of 20.4m cartons, according to the latest forecast from New Zealand Apples and Pears (NZAPI) issued on 15 March.

A statement by NZAPI said: “As a result of the storm, the Hawke’s Bay pipfruit crop is down 33 per cent. This represents a reduction of 4.3m cartons in the Hawke’s Bay region. Crop reductions are across the range of the varieties grown in Hawke’s Bay.”

The Hawke’s Bay is New Zealand’s largest pipfruit growing region, typically accounting for close to two-thirds of national production. Pre-cyclone estimates put the Hawke’s Bay crop at 12.9m cartons, representing 63 per cent of the overall crop.

Key South Island growing regions Central Otago and Nelson/Tasman continue to experience good growing and harvest conditions and are on course to meet forecast crop expectations.


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