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"Cold shower" for cold storage

China: Apple volumes in cold storage fall by one third

The apple purchase market in the fall of 2016-2017 was less than ideal. The apple volume in cold storage set a new record. Many farmers decided to place their harvest in cold storage because the price was relatively low. They were waiting for the market to change and commercial opportunities to come along. However, since the apple volume in cold storage was excessive, and the market could not absorb this volume, the price remained low when the farmers sold their stock from cold storage. The saturated market conditions do not only influence sales of fresh apples, but also harm the development of the apple market.

This year is different. The volume of apples that entered cold storage was perhaps one third smaller than last year. The reasons for this situation are as follows: apple farmers and apple traders suffered great losses last year and are more hesitant to take similar risks this year. Many apple traders also reduced their purchase of apples, which in turn reduced the volume of apples that entered cold storage.

The main reason, however, is the cold spell in April this year. Extreme weather conditions caused the apple production volume to decrease, and in some areas the entire harvest was lost. Frequent snowfall as well as constant rain in the harvest season also reduced the product quality of apples. The volume of top-quality apples in China decreased by 30%. Since apples are scarce this year and the price therefore relatively high, most early-season apples immediately entered the market. They were sold quickly, and there were few apples left for cold storage.

Source: Fruit Service Center

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