Marc Peyres, Blue Whale

France: Apple season late, volumes back to normal

The French apple season is finally getting underway, Marc Peyres from Blue Whale said this is latest in history! "We are more than two weeks late this year, this is due to a lot of rain in Spring which we never really caught up from. However volumes will be back to normal after last year's smaller amounts." The estimate for France is 1.5 million tonnes, of which Blue Whale will market 200,000 tonnes, the company has increased orchard size in recent years, these new orchards are now coming into fruition.


The estimated French volumes is around 10% down on two years ago, this is consistent with volumes throughout Europe. The European market is looking very strong at the moment and according to Peyres, the markets outside Europe - some are good and some are not. "There is still apples from Chile on the market, some of which has quality issues, I expect this to be clear in around two weeks."

Blue Whale who already sell apples in around 70 countries try open a new market every year, "This keeps our options open for varieties and sizes that we have. We try to sell our fruit in the best places, everyone is talking about Asia at the moment, for us it is not an idea market as our fruit would hit the market at the peak of the Chinese season and European apples are expensive in comparison. Asia is at the end a small export market for Europe. There is some opportunities there especially for Gala and Grannys, the Gala has had good success in Asia also the Fuji. The Granny has a small market, because it is different from local taste. At end , it is a small and difficult market for Europe as we are far away and transit time quite long for most destinations"

Peyres explains that the US sends fresh apples to India in the second part of the Northern Hemisphere season. "The Indian market is only really good for Europe after the domestic crop is finished,so many times after European export is finished as well. People will pay a little extra for something different, but it remains a difficult market because of the fluctuation of the Rupee.

Pink Lady was launched into Asia few years ago, but last year Blue Whale had to cut supply because the European production was so short. This year it is looking more positive and supply will increase, "Price is an issue in Asia and consumers only want sweet apples. Countries such as Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore are promising as people want to try something different. It will be small volumes but lots of small volumes add up to big volumes."

In summary Peyres predicts a good year, the may be some difficulties in early October, he is not sure what influences the Chilean and Washington crops will have on the market.

For more information:
Marc Peyres
Blue Whale
Tel +33

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