Jan Nowakowski of Genesis Fresh:

"Poland should consider reducing its production of apples"

The new season for Polish autumn apples is starting, which means varieties like Gala, Champion, Red and Golden Delicious, Jonagored, Idared and many others are about to hit the market. With different sounds coming from different growers; the question remains: "Can Poland sell all these apples?" The Polish company Genesis Fresh, producer and exporter, is convinced the Polish apples will all be sold.

The season started slightly earlier this season, according to Nowakowski of Genesis Fresh: "The weather has been good, although it was very dry summer in Europe as well in Poland. We had a bit more rain compared to the rest of western Europe. The hails have not affected us as much as it did the previous year. The sugar level in apples will be good this season."

The record harvest isn't news to anyone. But how much will Poland actually produce and what will they do with the apples? So far answers have ranged from selling them cheap to processing factories to selling the overhead to countries like China. Nowakowski is convinced Poland will be able to sell them all: "In terms of the volume, we will have almost 5mn tonnes of apples in Poland this season. The reason for this record harvest lie with the apple trees, they had some rest for the last two years and with this weather conditions we expect a massive volume this year. Depending on varieties, we will have about 40-45 per cent more apples and in some cases even double the amount of apples!"
"This season our apples will mostly be exported to European markets, as always. For many years we've supplied those markets, even though this year there are also more apples in those countries. Our apples are also exported to the Middle East, Africa and the Far East. This year, we expect to supply 30-35 per cent more volume to those markets compared to last year. China will have our special interest as there were huge hails and they lost about 30 per cent of their crop. We are looking to be the bridge to close that gap this season."

When asked how he can be so sure Poland will get rid of literally all its apples, Nowakowski says he's heard this question just about every year: "Every year, there are questions if we can sell all of our production. Last year proved that the Polish apples are well recognized all over the world and new markets are looking to taste our delicious apples. We'll be fine! Time will tell what the final figures of apples going towards China will be, but I am optimistic about it and Polish apples will gain new consumers this year."

It isn't all sunshine and rainbows in Poland though, as Nowakowski does admit there were issues with finding the amount of manpower required to harvest all the apples: There are issues with manpower in a lot of countries, the same goes for Poland. In the summer, we didn’t have enough people to harvest summer fruits like cherries, strawberries and plums. As we are closer to autumn, we observe more availability in manpower so we are less worried that the apples will be left on the trees unpicked."

Nowakowski agrees however that Poland might have to reduce its production of apples: "During Prognosfruit 2018 in August, which was held in Poland this year, I had many discussions with producers and exporters from France, Italy, Belgium and there were a lot of concerns regarding the production of Polish apples. I agree, Poland should consider to reduce the production of apples in general. It will have healthy influence on the market in Europe and the prices on the apples in Poland. It will definitely benefit our costs of production and profitability. Each year, all costs of production are increasing, the labor costs are also on the rise, but our sale prices are not increasing accordingly. In fact, the sale price in many ways doesn’t cover the production costs."

For more information:
Jan Nowakowski
Genesis Fresh
Tel. +48223783405
Email: info@genesisfresh.com

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