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Israel: Minneola season started at Mehadrin

Despite a bad year for Israeli red grapefruit, growers and exporters are looking forward to good Orri and tangerine seasons. A storm last week threatened to damage fruit, but it's not expected that there will be substantial damage to this year's citrus crops.

“Minneola season will be in full swing next week, and we expect a good market with good prices this year,” said Tomer Ezra of Mehadrin. “We had some strong weather last week, but we won't know what the effects of that will be for a few more days.” Last week's storms raised the potential for freeze damage to Israel's citrus crops, and though Ezra admitted that there has been some damage so far, it doesn't seem like there's been extensive harm to this year's crops. The potential for a good season this year is also because of an increased demand at higher prices coming from France. “France is buying a lot more minneolas this season and they are willing to pay the prices for it in contrary to this other countries are not.

“We'll soon start harvesting Orri, and so far, it looks like they survived the storm,” said Ezra. He hopes further reports show there's been little to no damage, as Mehadrin is anticipating strong demand and several programs already in place. That's in contrast to the way red grapefruit has fared this year. According to Ezra, volumes, prices and demand have been very low.

“There's red grapefruit from Turkey, Spain and Florida, so there's more supply than demand,” said Ezra. “November and December are usually not good months for red grapefruit, but this year has been worse than other years.

Avocados, on the other hand, have a much sunnier outlook. With supplies of Ettinger avocados winding down, Mehadrin starts selling Pinkerton. But Ezra is really looking forward to the Hass season, as there's the prospect of big demand for that variety.

“There's not enough Hass avocados for the demand there is,” said Ezra. “I have less than what I can sell, and though growers are planting more, it's going to be a few years before there's more volume.”

Sharon Fruit
Similarly, Ezra is also expecting a good year for Sharon fruit. “We have nice programs already in place with supermarkets for Sharon fruit,” said Ezra. “There's no problem with fruit in the field, we expect more volumes than last year, and quality looks good.”

For more information:
Tomer Ezra
Tel: +31 180 642 570
Fax: +31 180 642 571

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