The nectarines season in Turkey will continue for a couple more weeks, when it will finally reach its end. The season has been good, however the heat does make the harvesting challenging and causes the fruit to lose quality if not handled properly.
The Turkish nectarines are currently being harvested. According to Mustafa Arslan, sales manager for Turkish exporting company MDA Agricultural Products (MDA), the season is a very turbulent one: “The Nectarine season in Mersin starts around the beginning of May and will continue until the end of June. This year the crop gave us less than last year, this affects prices directly. Additionally the huge demand from Russia causes abnormal prices. Last season prices were around 0,55-0,60 Euro per kg, but this season we see prices around 1,25-1,40 Euro per kg. We expect these prices to decrease in the upcoming days though.”
As if these conditions weren’t challenging enough, the weather is causing more issues. “This season’s harvest is done in very hot weather conditions, so we have to harvest carefully, carry the produce to our packing house quickly and need to pack them in the same day to ensure the quality is not lost. So we have to fight against the weather to keep the fruit’s quality fresh and strong. Pre-cooling is so important and loading conditions must be done directly from the cold storages.” Arslan explains.
The Turkish nectarines are very popular in Russia. “The sudden demand has led to higher prices, but Russia is currently taking the lion’s share of our nectarines. We also export to some Arabic and Western European countries, but our focus has been towards the far east. Singapore, Malaysia, Hong Kong and Vietnam are all very interesting markets for us. Countries in the Gulf are also show big potential. Some of these countries are new markets for us. I expect us to expand even further next season, entering countries like South Korea and the Philippines.”
With the season coming closer to its end, Arslan looks forward to the next produce that MDA will focus on: “We start to pack cherries next week for the Far east countries by air cargo from Alaşehir, Manisa region. After that the packing of sultana seedless grapes starts in the middle of July. We’re ready for it!” he concludes.