However, as the harvesting season progressed, the industry realised that the anticipated volumes are not going to materialize as fruit size in general and pack-outs of fruits on the tree were affected by a combination of drought and heatwave conditions.
Current volumes in storage combined with exports to date led to the downward adjustment for pome fruit export cartons. The newly calculated volumes indicates a decrease of between -6% to -9% compared to the previous season (refer to table below).
A decrease in export volumes of Golden Delicious (-11%), Granny Smith (-20%), Pink Lady (-29%) and Fuji (-16%) can directly be attributed to weather conditions impacting on colour development, fruit size and pack-outs
Pear export volumes are also down on initial projections. The decrease in export volumes of Williams Bon Chretien (-5%) is due to smaller fruit size, good demand from the canning industry and a lack in demand from the Northern Hemisphere importing countries. Packhams Triumph (-4%), Abate Fetel (-14%) and Vermont Beauty (-19%) are also down compared to last year. On the contrary export volumes of Forelle are in line with the previous season.
A tough season in terms of grower returns and profitability levels is anticipated as a result of the strengthening of the Rand against the major currencies (US Dollar, UK Pound Sterling and Euro) in combination with the decrease in export volumes.
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