The Turkish citrus sector reported good yields for MY 2018/19 despite the Mediterranean fruit fly problem and rough weather conditions. In order to mitigate those negative factors and not face export rejections, Turkish producers started to harvest their products earlier than normal. Other factors also affected production such as high input costs, which are almost totally dependent on exchange rates. For MY 2018/19, orange production estimate is slightly lower than last year at 1.9 million MT and tangerine production is estimated at 1.65 million MT (MMT), up from 1.55 MMT last year.
Orange exports are estimated at 350,000 MT, tangerines at 710,000 MT, and lemon exports estimate is 571,000 MT for MY 2018/19. The main reasons for the decline are economic turmoil in neighboring countries and the Mediterranean fruit fly problem, which is the most important reason for rejections by importing countries, mainly Russia.
The trends in citrus production in Turkey can be seen above. In addition to a large domestic market, Turkey exports one-third of total citrus production and 70 percent of total exports are sent to Russia, Iraq and Ukraine. The most exported citrus items are lemons and tangerines, both of which have been increasing in production in recent years.