Recent good rain in Limpopo Province has been beneficial to mangoes, although some orchards experienced a degree of wind damage which should be minimal.
Prospects for the mango season differ over the various production regions, and it’s difficult to give a firm estimate at this stage, notes Derek Donkin, CEO of Subtrop, the industry organisation for mangoes, litchis and avocados.
The major harvesting only takes place from December but the first Tommy Atkins mangoes have arrived on the market.
“I reckon a commercial mango crop of 15% lower than last year,” says Pieter Buys, chairperson of the South African Mango Growers’ Association. “Informal mango farmers without irrigation could be down by more, 20% or so.”
Last year saw a mango crop of 75,000 tonnes.
“It’s been an odd year on mangoes,” Pieter remarks. Flowering was uneven, he explains, and took place over a long period, with the result that pollination was erratic and now there are small fruit as well as large fruit on the same tree, which will require more labour during the harvesting period to move through orchards multiple times.
For more information:
South African Mango Growers’ Association
Tel: +27 51 307 3677