New Zealand apple growers not yet ready to talk numbers

New Zealand’s apple harvest will begin a little after Chinese New Year which falls on February 19 this year. Mark Pay of Mr Apple told FreshPlaza that this year’s harvest is approximately 7-10 days behind the harvest from 2014, which had been the best one since 1998 according to the organisation’s statement released last year.

None of the growers contacted would comment on expected numbers or export conditions this early before the harvest. Many are also awaiting until after this year’s Fruit Logistica produce trade fair in Berlin (held each February) before discussing exports to Europe and other destinations.

It is possible to reflect on the bumper crop of New Zealand apples that came in last year, however. 2014 saw 505,000 metric tonnes harvested, with some 308,000 metric tonnes sent for export. The Government Industry Agreement for Biosecurity Readiness and Response (GIA) which was signed in December 2014 may also be a consideration for growers this year, as it sets out operational responses to different individual pests, how they are managed and by whom cost is shared.

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