The South African apple and pear industry has reported that apple exports will be down by 11 per cent, while pears will be 20 per cent lower than last year. Hail during the early season caused significant damage in a number of production regions and has been the major reason for reduced export volumes. So far this season apples volumes offered for the export market have dropped by around 5m cartons compared with last year. It is estimated that 40.16m cartons will now be exported compared to last year’s 45.26m cartons. Pear volumes are expected to drop from 21.2m cartons last year to 16.9m cartons.
Apples exported to the UK and Europe fell by 26 per cent and 18 per cent respectively, and shipments to Russia were down by 53 per cent. By contrast, exports to the Far East, the US and Canada saw significant increases. Exports of pears declined to most markets, with a notable drop of 16 per cent in shipments to the EU so far this season.