Apple production areas in the northwest of China were suddenly hit by hailstorms in late September. One of the most important apple production areas in China, Luochuan, received the most severe damage. This is the time when apples are being covered with protective bags, and since the hailstorms lasted quite long, the overall product quality and production volume was severely impacted.
"Official data has not yet been released, but it is our understanding that the extreme weather conditions did not just reduce the overall production volume in Luochuan by 20%, but also lowered the ratio of top-quality apples. Apart from Luochuan, apple production areas in Gansu also suffered from extreme weather conditions such as typhoons. Apples fell from the trees or were damaged in the process. The apple market may very well show a polarization later in the season. The price of high-quality apples could rise because the production volume is smaller than in previous years, but the price of second-grade apples may drop because the quality is barely satisfactory." This is according to Mr. Wang Gangchun of Yantai City Muping Lufeng Agricultural Plantation Co., Ltd.
Mr. Wang continued, "the northwest of China suffered from hailstorms for two days, but other areas suffered from extreme weather conditions as well. Apple production areas in Shandong suffered from hailstorms and overcast, rainy weather. The extent of the damage in Shandong is not yet clear. We do not know yet what the weather conditions did to the production volume and product quality. Only after weather conditions stabilize can the real damage be assessed. But based on current conditions I expect the market to improve after National Day [October 1st]. The news of a reduced production volume of high-quality apples will lead to speculation in the apple market. And that will undoubtedly have an impact on the market conditions later in the season."
In addition to speculation, there are other factors that have an impact on sales conditions, such as the rate at which apples from storage are absorbed by the market, or the size of the apples. And according to Mr. Wang, the apples that suffered from the hailstorms are likely smaller than usual.
For more information:
Mr. Wang Gangchun
Yantai City Muping Lufeng Agricultural Plantation Co., Ltd.
Tel.: +86 131 8878 2275