India is out of lockdown and the country as a whole is almost back too normal, but as the grape export moves into the main season business is not what it should be.
“The markets are very subdued, down around 20-30%. This is mainly due to continued lockdowns in Europe which has affected sentiment," explains Nagesh Shetty from Indian export company Deccan Produce.
Exports of Indian grapes started at the end of November the main destination being Russia, small volumes have also just started to be sent to the European market at the moment.
“We are not certain how the season will play out, fixed contacts to supermarkets will be fine but the loss of the food service and catering sectors is causing concern. This is on top of a bad season last year when exporters had to halt exports 2/3 of the way through and fruit which was already on the water landed to low prices on the spot market.”
Nagesh does not envisage high prices for fruit this season and exporters are apprehensive about exporting. How much will be exported, is still not clear but it is thought that a lot more will remain on the domestic market and in that of neighboring countries.
Exports to Asia have not started yet but Nagesh sees a roll-on effect from other markets giving the similar challenges here.
The growing season has gone well, despite a few rainy days last week which is thought may have caused some damage on the coloured varieties than the white varieties, but the situation is still being evaluated.
Exporters also face increased shipping costs this season with rates up between 40-100%. “This will be a challenge to exporters especially with low sentiment and demand.
"We also hope that containers continue to be available when we have the main volumes ready for shipping, as yet this has not been a problem though at a very high cost.”
For more information:
Deccan Edibles Pvt. Ltd.
Tel: +91-22-28346281 / 28258395