South Africa’s grapefruit production is set to increase by 5% to 370,000 tons in 2017/18, due to increase in planted area. Normal weather conditions in the main growing regions of Limpopo and Mpumalanga have also helped yields. The country’s grapefruit exports are expected to increase by 4% to 240,000 tons due to the increase in production and strong demand in Asia and the EU.
Lemon/lime production expected to rise by 7% to 460,000 tons in line with the increase in planted area, new orchards coming full production, and normal weather conditions in the main production areas. As a result, exports are forecast to be up 7% to 320,000 tons, also thanks to a growth in demand from the Middle East and Asia.
As for the South African orange crop, output is estimated to increase by 8% to 1.47 million tons thanks to normal rainfall and an increase in area planted in the main growing regions of Limpopo, Eastern Cape and Mpumalanga. Consequently, exports are expected to rise by 4% to 1.22 million tons thanks to the increased production and strong demand from China and Hong Kong. South Africa has also successfully dealt with Citrus Black Spot (CBS), which had hindered access to the EU market.
Tangerine production is predicted to fall by 2% to 255,000 tons as a result of drought in the Western Cape. Nevertheless, exports are expected to be up 5% to 220,000 tons as export markets are prioritised over domestic markets due to strong demand for citrus in global markets.