Israeli citrus market starts to pick up

After a slow start to the season for Israel's citrus exporters, there are promising signs starting to emerge. As supplies from an unusually long South African citrus season taper off, there will be more opportunities for Israel's exporters to sell their fruit on the European market.

“There wasn't much space for Israeli fruit, but we saw the market wake up two weeks ago,” said Tomer Ezra of Mehadrin. Ezra credits diminishing supplies of South African fruit as the reason demands for their citrus has increased. South African fruit lingered much longer than usual on the European market, edging out Israeli citrus. While it's not unusual to see South African fruit this far into the year, Ezra pointed out that it's very unusual to see so much South African fruit at this point in the year and in good quality.

“Normally, there's still fruit from South Africa around at this time, but not at this quality,” said Ezra. “We don't know if this will be normal in the future, but we hope it's not like this every year.” But as supplies of South African fruit dry up, there will be more opportunities for Israeli exporters, though prices are still relatively low.

“We now have a place for our fruit,” said Ezra. “But the prices are not there, because Spanish and Turkish fruit are also on the market, so it's something we're still struggling with.”

Mehadrin’s minneolas and mandarin export season for both those commodities will begin around January. Minneolas and the Orri are always high in demand and looks very promising.

Ezra predicted they'll have supplies of Sweeties for about another month, and he pointed out that prices were good this year. The Sweeties at this point have a higher brix then the first crop, because they on the tree longer. “They taste very good and are very juicy at this time of the season.

For more information:
Tomer Ezra
MTEX Holland B.V.
Tel: +31 180 642 570
Fax: +31 180 642 571

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