Australia’s 2019/20 peach and nectarine crop is set to climb 2% to 96,000 tons from the previous year, according to FAS Canberra data. The growth is due to old varieties being replaced with newer more productive ones. The crop has benefited from large parts of the main production area, Victoria, receiving plenty of rainfall in recent months. Nectarines account for 53% of the crop and peaches for 47%. The Australian harvest runs from November to January for peaches and from January to February for nectarines.
Australia’s fresh peach and nectarine exports volumes have doubled in volume over the past five years. They are expected to reach 17,000 tons in 2019/20 (up 9%) on the back of the good crop and the increasing demand from China, which accounts for about 44% of the total. In 2018/19 alone, China’s imports were up 68% in volume. Protocols were signed in 2017 to allow Australia to export nectarines to China, while in 2018, protocols were signed for peach, apricot and plum imports from Australia for the first time.
Domestic consumption is set to remain stable, with the increase in volumes heading to overseas markets. Around 71% of the peaches and nectarines produced in Australia went to fresh domestic consumption.