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5% drop in global peach and nectarine crop 

5% drop in global peach and nectarine crop 


The global peach and nectarine crop is estimated to fall 5% to 21.0 million tons, due to adverse weather conditions in top producers China and the EU, according to USDA/FAS data. The reduced harvest is expected to lower global exports. 

After the bumper 2019 crop, the EU’s 2020 harvest is predicted down 15% to 3.5 million tons, due to a variety of damaging weather events in leading producers Spain, Italy, Greece, and France. In addition, a saturated market in recent years has led to reduced planted area in Spain, Italy, and France, with Spain shifting some production towards tree nuts. Exports are forecast down 13% to 155,000 tons. However, imports are only marginally up as domestic supplies can meet most local demand.

In China, heavy snow in April caused damage during fruit set and is expected to the crop by 3% to 14.5 million tons. Exports are projected to plummet 33% to 80,000 tons as Russia continues its ban on imports of fruit from China. Russia was China’s third-largest market until August 2019, when phytosanitary concerns led to a ban. China’s imports are expected forecast up jump 40% to 38,000 tons, with much of the rise due to greater shipments from Chile before COVID-19 disruptions had an impact.



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Turkey looks to Far East to expand export markets for stone fruit

Turkey looks to Far East to expand export markets for stone fruit

Turkey’s peach and nectarine crop is forecast to grow 5% to 870,000 tons in the 2020/21 campaign, according to Turkish Statistics Institute (TurkSTAT). Exports are increasing due to the large production volumes and the strong demand from the Russian and EU markets. Turkey continues to be among the top ten exporters in the world for peaches and nectarines. Farmers in major growing areas are generally satisfied with the yields and quality of their crop thanks to favourable weather conditions during the blooming and harvest period. Most of the peach varieties planted in Turkey are Early Amber, Spring Crest, May Crest, Red Haven and Early Red.

Planting area for peach production in Turkey continues to increase due to new investments for the export market and juice industry in the last decade. The total estimated number of all peach and nectarine trees was about 21 million in 2019. The total number of bearing trees increased from 14 million in 2009 to 17.4 million in 2019.

Use of peaches/nectarines for processing is forecast at 130,000 tons in 2020/21, similar to 2019/20. Approximately 15% of all peach production is used for juice. Turkish consumers prefer fruit juices of peach, cherry and apricot in “nectar” form. Nectars are very popular, but there is also a growing trend for 100% fruit juices. Peaches are also used to make canned products, marmalades, and are sold as frozen fruit.

Turkey is one of the largest exporters of stone fruit in the world, exporting over 250,000 tons annually, with the majority going to EU countries and Russia. Turkish exporters are also looking for opportunities for stone fruits such as cherries in the Far East, particularly China in recent years. Turkey exported 884 tons of fresh stone fruit to China in 2019. 


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Georgia increased its export of stone fruit and will raise its potato crops

Georgia increased its export of peaches and nectarines by 40%

By the end of August, Georgia exported more than 23,000 tons of peaches and nectarines, or 10,000 tons more than YOY in 2019, informed the Ministry of Agriculture of the country. Fruit are basically exported to Russia (15,500 tons), Armenia (730 t) and Azerbaijan (500 tons). The rest was exported to Kazakhstan, Ukraine, Moldova, Poland and Slovenia. Pilot lots were also shipped to Singapore and Qatar, informs agency.

Thanks to CIP, Georgian farmers will raise their potato crop

Three years ago, the International Center of potato (CIP) initiated the project intending the development of potato production in Georgia. In the frame of that three-year project, 76 new potato varieties were introduced for the selection, and after careful trials, the most suitable varieties in terms of yield and disease resistance were selected for production in Georgia. The negotiations regarding the second stage of the projects are being currently held.

“The representative office of CIP in Tbilisi, the capital of Georgia, is the regional headquarter for 7 other Caucasian and Central Asian countries: Azerbaijan, Armenia, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenia and Kirgizstan,” says Rusudan Mdivani, regional delegate of CIP. “We opened several laboratories of in vitro selection of potato in some of these countries and carry out the researches devising to test new genotypes, adapt them to local climate and soil conditions, etc.”

Potato is the strategic product for Georgia, it is one of the most popular vegetables in consumers’ everyday diet. Thanks to CIP’s project, Georgia will not just satiate the domestic market, but will help to expand the export to Azerbaijan, Armenia, Turkey and even to Iran.

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Taiwan’s love story with fruit remains undiminished

Taiwan’s love story with fruit remains undiminished


Taiwan is expected to import up to 15,000 tons of peaches and nectarines in 2020, mainly from the US and Chile, according to USDA data. Taiwan’s own domestic peach and nectarine crop is forecast to be up 18% to 19,000 tons in 2020 thanks to generally favourable growing condition and orchards reaching maturity. Taichung and Taoyuan remain the largest producing regions, accounting for almost 80% of domestic production. Taoyuan mainly produces early sweet varieties, including honey peaches at the higher altitudes.

The Taiwanese are among the world’s largest fruit consumers. Wholesale chains have a strong preference for imported products because of their competitive prices compared to domestic production. Both the local sweet peaches and the honey peaches are considered premium fruits due to their taste and appearance. The honey peach is a local variety that stays on the tree until the end of the season when the weather gets colder and the sugars increase rapidly and the acids decrease. They often sell for ten times the price of regular peaches in retail.

Still, both the imported and domestic peaches from Taiwan are highly dependent on consumer whims. They will not hesitate to buy the most price-competitive fruit, but are not brand loyal. Total fruit consumption therefore continues to grow, but there is little loyalty to a particular variety.

Meanwhile, cherry imports are slightly higher than last year, at 12,000 tons, with few negative Covid-related effects observed on consumption patterns.

Photo: USDA

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Record global peach and nectarine crop in 2019

Record global peach and nectarine crop in 2019


Global peach and nectarine harvest is expected to set a new record of 22.3 million tons in 2019 (+10%), as orchards in China, the EU, and the US recover from the weather-hit 2018 campaign, according to USDA data. The growth in supply is expected to boost imports and exports. 

China’s harvest production is estimated to break all records, reaching 15.0 million tons (+9.7), thanks to favourable growing conditions in the Shandong province. Accordingly, exports are set to rise almost 60% to 100,000 tons, driven by higher shipments to Vietnam. Imports are also set to rise (to 28,000 tons), with arrivals from Chile and Australia, the latter having recently signed a bilateral Free Trade Agreement with China.

US production is up almost 20% to 814,000 tons, thanks to excellent conditions during critical points of the season. The larger crop will raise exports to 75,000 tons (mainly to Mexico and Canada), while imports are expected to fall, due to lower shipments from Chile.

A large EU crop is expected, with output up 7% to 4.1 million tons. The increased supplies are expected to drive exports up by almost 30% to 200,000 tons, while lowering imports to 30,000 tons.


Source: USDA

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Large European peach and nectarine crop in 2019/20

Large European peach and nectarine crop in 2019/20


Favourable weather conditions in most production countries mean that the EU’s peach and nectarine production is estimated to rise in 2019/20. According to FAS Post data, volumes are up 6.6% to 4.1 million tons countries. EU stone fruit exports continue to decline in the face of the continued Russian embargo imposed in 2014 on exports of food and agricultural products. The area planted is expected to remain stable at around 222,900 ha. EU Consumption of fresh peaches and nectarines is estimated to be up 6% to 3.2 million tons due to higher supply and high temperatures. Peaches and nectarines for processing should rise to 710,000 tons in line with the increased supply. 

While EU imports of peaches and nectarines rose in 2018/19 by 28% to 34,855 tons (US$86 million), they are expected to fall in 2019/20 due to the bumper crop. The leading suppliers of peaches and nectarines to the EU are Chile, South Africa, Turkey and Morocco.  

As for its exports, the main destinations for EU peaches and nectarines are Belarus, Switzerland and the Ukraine.

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Surge in exports of Australian peaches and nectarines to China

Surge in exports of Australian peaches and nectarines to China

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.  

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5% increase in Turkey’s peach and nectarine crop 

5% increase in Turkey’s peach and nectarine crop 


Turkey’s total peach and nectarine production for 2019/20 is expected to rise 5% to 830,000 tons, according to data published by the Turkish Statistics Institute (TurkSTAT). Yields and quality are generally considered satisfactory thanks to favourable weather conditions. Planting area for peach continues to expand with a focus on export markets and the juice industry, and now stands at 46,400 ha. Indeed, Turkey is among the world’s top-ten exporters of peaches and nectarines. The most common peach varieties in Turkey are Early Amber, Spring Crest, May Crest, Red Haven and Early Red. The Turkish season runs from April to early October

Peach and nectarine production for processing is forecast at 135,000 tons in 2019/20, around 15% of all peach production. The Turkish juice industry is growing at about six% annually (for all fruit juices). Turkey exports more than 250,000 tons of stone fruits annually, mainly to the EU and Russia.


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Taiwan’s peach crop contracts 25%

Taiwan’s peach crop contracts 25%


Taiwan’s peach and nectarine crop is predicted to contract 25% in 2019 to 17,000 tons, due to quality issues and lower domestic demand. The lower quality of this year’s crop has resulted in lower prices for domestic sweet and honey varieties. Similar problems last year led to farmers abandoning a portion of their crops. Peaches and nectarine seedling area is expected to expand, but not by enough to compensate for the damage caused during the 2016 typhoon season. In fact, total harvest area is predicted to decrease from 2,075ha in 2018 to 2,060ha in 2019. Besides facing severe weather problems, in recent times, growers have also faced labour shortages.

Peach and nectarine imports to Taiwan are estimated to remain at 15,000 tons in 2019. The country’s two main suppliers are the US (79%) and Chile. Issues with Chilean production have led to a 12% increase in imports from the US, to 10,856 tons.

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A promising outlook for Spain’s peach and nectarine campaign

A promising outlook for Spain’s peach and nectarine campaign

The first estimates for the 2019 Spanish peach and nectarine are in and so far so good. Normal fruit volumes are expected with no loss due to frost damage. The good weather from the beginning of the season has led to good flower set. Production levels are expected to be similar to those of 2018. The total size of the crop for all peach and nectarine varieties is expected to reach 1.58 million tons, up slightly from the 2018 level of 1.49 million tons.

The stone fruit market has not been so favourable in April and May due to the fact the huge Russian market remains closed and alternative overseas markets are not an option.

Crop estimates (tons)







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Source: Cooperativas Agro-Alimentarias