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Europe: Freshfel expectations for the 2014/15 citrus fruit campaign

Freshfel published its expectations for the global citrus fruit 2014/15 campaign.

In the Northern hemisphere, there should be a 4% drop, with a total production of 28.7 million tons. As regards the single categories, oranges are expected to decrease by 5% (17.3 million ton) and tangerines and clementines by 1% (6.3 million tons). Lemon production should drop by 5% (3.4 million tons) and grapefruit should stop at 1.7 million tons (-6%).

The EU seems to be the area with the most significant drop (-10%) rather than the Mediterranean basin (-3%). In the United States, production is increasing by 2% despite citrus greening problems.

As regards the Mediterranean area, after a record production in 2013/14, production is expected to decrease by 3.3% at 21.3 million tons, though it will still be abundant.

Mediterranean basin citrus exports are expected to increase by 1.3% with respect to the previous season, for a total of 8.1 million tons. This will be due to less waste and less produce going to the processing industry. The exports of Turkey (+5%), Italy (+16%) and Israel (+21%) should particularly increase. Spanish exports are expected to remain stable (-0.3%), whereas those of Greece and Cyprus should drop (by 6 and 11% respectively).

Here are the expectation for the biggest producers - Spain and Italy.

SPAIN
The total production (according to provisional data) in 2014/15 is expected to decrease by 2% down to 6.5 million tons.

Grades tend to be surprisingly large, despite the drought. Thankfully autumn rain helped. As regards the Russian ban, the situation is still worrying, although exports to the country only represented 2% of the total. 

Tangerines: harvesting started one week early. Grades are normal, colour is good and the nice weather meant there were no major disease problems.

Oranges: harvesting started one week early and the quality of fruit is good.


Estimated production in Spain.

Lemons: the season was 10 days early. Quality is good and so are grades. The production of the Fino variety increased by 10% whereas that of the Verna variety decreased by 15%. Due to the freezes that affected Argentina last year, the country produced less lemons and so the Spanish produce could benefit from higher prices. 

Grapefruit: there was competition from Turkey and other markets.



ITALY
The country should produce 24% less than the 2013/14 season.

Oranges: the trend depends on the variety. Blood oranges should drop by 40-60% depending on the area, but it is probably due to the fact that trees produced a lot the previous season. As regards the Navel and Washington Navel variety, production should drop by 20 and 30%.

Lemons
: production is expected to be 30% lower. 

Tangerines: production should be 20% lower.

Clementines: stable production.

Source: Freshfel

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