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South African citrus starts with good prices, high demand

The South African citrus season is getting underway, the first lemons have been packed and are arriving in the markets. Grapefruit is being harvested and there are limited volumes of satsumas. First satsumas have arrived and the quality is good.

John Taillard from Capespan South Africa explains that most lemons are going to the Russian and Middle East markets, "Here the price is good and there is a high demand. In Europe the standards for colour are higher and there is still availability of Northern Hemisphere supply. However the European market conditions seems favourable and supply will follow."



The lemon volume is expected to be comparable to last year and the grapefruit should be up and first indications are that fruit size is better, but not as big as initially expected.

On the issue of a possible ban on entry to Europe if Citrus Black Spot is found Taillard, is concerned, but have confidence that the measures being applied will be affective, "It will not be necessary to find other markets, in fact it would be irresponsible, as we have many good customers in the EU. We will continue to ship to the EU. The industry is pulling out all the stops to ensure we comply to the regulations on CBS. We are being very cautious and will only ship fruit from unaffected areas."

As with other fruit producers, Capespan are looking at the emerging markets such as India, Pakistan and the Far East. Taillard says, "The trend to grow in Far East and emerging markets will continue, but this should not diminish the importance of our European clients."

Although there is quite some Northern Hemisphere orange supply available in Europe, we feel that the market would want to switch over to fresh South African supply.

The Late Mandarin Supply from Southern Hemisphere and especially South Africa will continue to increase. This forms an integral part of Capespan's portfolio especially in emerging markets such as Far East.

Capespan feels positive and confident about the season and all challenge lying ahead.

For more information:
John Taillard
Capespan
Tel: +27 21 917 2600
 john_taillard@capespan.co.za


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