In MY 2019/20 (January/December), EU production of peaches and nectarines is estimated to increase 6.6 percent compared to the previous season to 4.1 million MT due to favorable weather conditions in most of the major producing countries. Conversely, in MY 2019/20 (April/March) EU cherry production is projected to decline 18 percent to 681,596 MT. Unfavorable weather conditions during flowering and ripening in EU producing countries support the anticipated decline. EU stone fruit exports continue to decline as a result of the 2014 Russian embargo imposed on food and agricultural products. During MY 2019/20, in response to EU domestic supplies, EU imports of cherries may increase while EU imports of peaches and nectarines are expected to decrease. The United States is the fifth largest non-EU supplier of cherries.
In MY 2019/20, fresh consumption of peaches and nectarines is projected to increase six percent to 3.2 MMT due to higher supply. Favorable weather conditions in the EU may also encourage peach and nectarine consumption. The use of peaches and nectarines for processing may also increase to 710,790 MT as a result of higher supply compared to previous year.
In MY 2018/19, the main suppliers of peaches and nectarines to the EU were Chile, South Africa, Turkey and Morocco. EU’s total imports of peaches and nectarines rose 28 percent to 34,855 MT and valued at $86 million. In MY 2019/20, EU peaches and nectarines imports are expected to be lower due to the forecast higher production.