The production season of various stone fruits recently began in Chinese production areas. Every year, Hubei produces large volumes of peaches. Mr. Zhang, a Chinese fruit trader, recently talked about current conditions in the Hubei peach market:
"The peach market is quite chaotic in comparison with last year. The sales speed is extremely slow and there are only a few people active in the market. The main reason for this condition is the outbreak of COVID-19 shortly after Chinese Spring Festival [25 January, 2020]. The market suffered many consequences, including sales difficulties."
"The early-season peach varieties have already entered the market. The overall product quality is alright. The peaches entered the market 10 days late in comparison with last year. That is the result of dry weather conditions in the last few weeks. The peaches required more time to ripen. In addition, the size of the peaches is quite small because of these weather conditions. On top of all that, production areas suffered from hailstorms in April. Some of the fruit was destroyed by hailstones, but in the end the impact was limited. The peach price is not great this year. The retail season has only just begun and market supply is still growing. The price is 1.2 yuan [0.17 USD] per 0.5 kg. That is a relatively low price this early in the season. I hope the price will improve and stabilize during this season."
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