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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)







PREV 2019

2019 vs 18

2019 vs 17

2019 vs (media 5 años) 











Saturn Peach










Flat Nectarine






























Source: Cooperativas Agro-Alimentarias



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Contrasting fortunes for EU peach and nectarine producers

Contrasting fortunes for EU peach and nectarine producers

After a positive 2016 campaign for EU peach and nectarine producers, 2017 was somewhat more complicated. The 2018 campaign saw a smaller crop due to frost damage in many areas of Europe. However, the pattern was not uniform across the EU. Despite the lower volumes of Italian and Spanish production, prices remained relatively low, although not as low as in 2017. Nevertheless, they were often below production cost. By contrast, French production was more successful on the market, commanding higher prices. This difference in price between French and Spanish production has been a phenomenon of the past three years now, and is no doubt the result of the efforts made by the French industry to develop the quality of its products, service, promotion, and collective actions such as environmentally responsible orchards. It is also the effect of the popularity of “Made in France” products in general, which makes the French more confident in domestic production than in foreign imports.

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Spain remains emphatically Europe’s stone fruit king

peaches y nectarines

Intra-EU trade in peaches and nectarines measured 1.3 million tons in 2017.  Every year, Spain’s dominant position becomes ever more secure as Europe’s main producer of the stone fruits, and 2017 was no different. Spanish exports to other EU countries have risen steadily over the past decade, from below 500,000 tons in 2007 to almost 900,000 tons in 2017. Meanwhile, Spain’s biggest rival, Italy, has seen its fortunes go in the opposite direction. In 2007, Italian exports of peach and nectarine to the EU stood at around 330,000 tons, but by 2017 that figure had dropped to around 200,000 tons. Elsewhere, since 2013, Greece has seen a steady increase in its EU exports, reaching approximately 120,000 tons in 2017. Europe’s other main producers of stone fruit, the Netherlands and France, have recorded relatively low exports to the EU over the past decade, never exceeding 50,000 tons. The EU’s largest importers of peaches and nectarines are Germany, France, Poland and Italy.

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Spain still European leader in peach and nectarine production

Spain has widened the gap with other leading European peach producers in all respects. Spanish production has increased acreage while maintaining productivity. It also has relatively lower labour costs than its competitors, making its exports cheaper. Spain has also invested in new varieties to offer consumers the broadest range, from low to premium level.

Spanish peaches and nectarines are ubiquitous on supermarket shelves across Europe. The flat peach is an example of Spanish R & D success, which is set to be exported to China. Despite limited water resources and salinity problems, Spanish production has adapted and succeeded in supplying massive volumes to the various markets.

Although Spanish production is larger overall, Italy remains Europe’s largest producer for the fresh market (1.2 million tons in 2016). However, most of its production is not premium level. Around 80% of Italian production is for the domestic market. Italians are the continent’s largest peach-nectarine consumers, with 17.1 kg/inhabitant consumed in 2016. Italian exports are on the decline, while imports continue to rise (+ 82% since 2012).

France keeps third position despite a decline in production and surfaces area as well as a deterioration in productivity. In 2016, production decreased by 5%, and surfaces by 4%. In spite of this, the French yield (22.03 tos/ha) is the best in Europe. Although high labour costs appear to have negatively affected competitiveness, the sector has adapted by offering mid-to-high-end products and new varieties in order to diversify its offer. It also specialises in organic production (6.4% of total production in 2016, while its neighbours don’t exceed 3.5%.

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Europe’s peach and nectarine production expected to fall by 8% in 2018


Europe’s peach and nectarine output is estimated at 3,670,000 tons for 2018, constituting a fall of 8% from the previous year. The only country with a positive trend was Greece, (+20%). Spanish production fell 11% to just over 1.5 million tons, with the most affected regions being the mid/late areas of Catalonia and Aragon. In these areas peach production is expected to be 15% lower and nectarine -18%. The earliest regions are also affected, but less so. In Murcia, Extremadura and Andalusia, the decline is 7% for peaches and 13% for nectarines.

Estimates published by CSO Italy show a drop of 16% compared to 2017 with the south of the country expecting a fall of over 20%, while output in the north is predicted to be 13% lower. French production is expected to be 10% lower than in 2017 at around 200,000 tons.

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Chilean peach and nectarine exports jump 11.4%

chile melocotones

The Association of Fruit Exporters of Chile AG (ASOEX) has announced that the country’s exports of nectarines and peaches in the 2017-2018 campaign rose 11.4% from the previous year, reaching a total of 98,200 tons. Nectarines accounted for 66,940 tons, which is 8% more than last season. Peaches contributed 31,260 tons – up 20% from last season.

Chile’s peach exports are mainly destined for North America (60%) followed by Latin America (35%). The picture is a little different for nectarines, with North America remaining the first destination (34%), followed closely by the Far East (31%), where shipments increased by 51% compared to last season. This boost in exports to the Far East no doubt relates to Chilean fruit gaining access to the Chinese market in February 2017.

Chile’s top-five exporters of nectarines and peaches accounted for 46% of the total shipment volumes. They were Gesex S.A. (1,780,600 boxes), followed by Verfrut S.A (1,172,932 boxes), Greenvic (862,963 boxes), Geofrut (817,392 boxes) and Lo Garcés (617,852 boxes).


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Plum Pox poses serious threat to France’s peach harvest

melocotones francia

France’s peach production in 2018 could be as much as 10& lower than last year’s output. This loss is mainly due to the blight of plum pox as well as frosts at the start of the year. The Medfel international meeting of the fruit and vegetable sector called for significant measures to be taken to tackle the problem. In 2017, France produced 215,800 tons of peach, but only 195,000 tons are forecast for this campaign.

Réart Vallée greenhouse production of peaches in Saint-Féliu and Pézilla-la-Rivière are already on the supermarket shelves. The forecasts of the EU’s other peach producing countries (Italy, Spain and Greece) are no longer published at Medfel, but should be announced shortly.

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Catalonia expects to harvest over 400,000 tons

According to estimates by the Catalan fruit business association, Afrucat, as well as the Agriculture and Livestock general management of the Department of Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries, Food and the Natural Environment (DAMM in Catalan), an overall increase of 9% is expected in Catalan stone fruit production, reaching 415,000 tonnes. 
By groups, round peach will drop by 2% (109,600 t), flat peach will be up 37% (103,550 t), nectarines will increase by 6% (178,700 t) and Pavia (yellow peach) will fall by 5% (22,600 t). So, Catalonia continues to specialize in flat peaches and nectarines. This overall increase is due to growth of 9% in the area cultivated and the absence of any significant frost. The plantation conversion plan has contributed to this increase in production area for ​​peaches and nectarines in Lleida and Tarragona. Lleida accounts for 89% of the volume in this province. The flat peach will overtake the round peach for the first time. 


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Europe consumes more peaches


Slight decrease in intra-EU stone fruit imports between 2012 and 2013. Nectarines, peaches, plums, apricots and cherries, in that order, added up to a million and a half tons in 2013, in import flows among EU-28 countries. In total, imports for 2013 were 0.2 % lower than last year, but represented a turnover of 1,871,365,564 euros, almost 150 million more than in 2012.
By varieties, peach saw a notable increase, with EU-28 imports in 2013 approaching 4% more, reaching almost 447,000 tons, 17 thousand more than 2012. In turn, nectarine volumes fell by 1,7%, reaching 625 thousand t in 2013, 9 thousand less than in 2012. But if we are talking about negative figures, plum imports were outstanding: 10% fewer intra-EU imports of this fruit in 2013, in other words, 21,500 t less than in 2012. Similarly, apricots underwent a 4% decline in imports among EU countries. Cherries were the exception, as numbers rose by almost 5.5 % in 2013 over the previous year. 
By destinations, a large part of these imports went to Germany, with 444 thousand t in 2013, illustrating an upward trend for 2011-2013, the majority from Spain, with 174,000 t in 2013, as well as 150,000 t from Italy the same year. Among destinations, Portugal and Italy took in 27% more imports in 2013 compared to 2012, which had seen a considerable drop, especially in Italy, and to a lesser extent in Portugal.