Red apple harvest starting this week

Spain: High prices expected for large calibre apples

The apple harvest period continues in Girona with the latest apples of the Gala variety, which arrived two weeks later than normal this year. It is, in fact, quite unusual that, during the month of August, there have been no falls in temperature or rainfall, which has delayed the colouration and made the harvesting duties a bit tougher.

In terms of volume, it is a normal campaign, although there will be a shortage of large calibres for this variety, both in Spain and in the rest of Europe. This is also something that will especially affect the growers who have not carried out the thinning tasks properly.

Prices started about 10 cents higher than last season for the first apples, although at present they have dropped about 5 cents, as the market has been filling with fruit from all producing areas. As the campaign develops, the sector expects pressure on small apple prices and good levels to be reached by the larger sizes because of their scarcity - it is expected that there won't be enough good quality apples for February.

At the moment, the prices paid for apples for processing are low, which is rather unusual during the first part of campaign.

This week will mark the start of the red apple harvest, for which a slight drop in production is expected, but with very good quality and calibres.

For the rest of Europe, there has been a considerable drop in Austrian production and, to a lesser extent, in Italy. Poland will recover from last season's drop, although fortunately, competition from Spanish apples will be weak - for the last two seasons they have been finding alternative markets to Russia, with a significant expansion into Asia.

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