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Italy: Stone fruit market to improve over next few days
Overlapping productions and abundant setting led to stone fruit overproduction, especially for what concerns apricots and cherries, with less than satisfactory prices for producers.
(All images are archive photos from the 2016 campaign)
Luckily, the warm temperatures and good quality should push consumption. As regards retailers, despite the fact that in winter they always say they will pay a fair price to producers, good intentions go to waste and production costs are not even covered.
We talked to a few operators about all this. The first reported that "the overlapping of productions, combined with the produce coming from Spain, flooded the market, so prices dropped. At the same time, as the fruit ripened early, supermarkets didn't have enough room ready for it. Apricots and cherries were the most affected."
The second operator is optimist as regards the next few days "as a significant quantity of apricots will have been sold and the market will be able to absorb volumes better. In the north, peaches and nectarines still have to enter full production. Cherries with big grades and good quality are doing well anyway."
According to the third operator, this was all due to "the lack of planning. It's true that overlaps did not help, but who knows how many stone fruit plants there are in Italy? Except for cooperatives and POs, many plant trees without criteria. I have seen many hectares planted in southern Italy with my own eyes."
The apricot and cherry market has actually been rather lively, but quantities have been significant. A fourth operator reports that "markets have been heavy also because Spain has so much produce that it flooded all of Europe with it."
Publication date: 6/19/2017
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