Harvesting is practically over, with overall volumes exceeding expectations thanks to the good weather from early October.
The quality of the fruit, intended as dry matter content, Brix level and pressure, is excellent, maybe the best of the decade (at least in Emilia-Romagna).
Grades vary a lot, from medium-big in Emilia-Romagna to medium-small in Lazio. This means 30-33-36 grades will be the most popular in Italy, putting pressure on sales at the beginning of the campaign especially on the smaller grades. Good prices for medium-big grades is expected from January onwards.
The global situation:
Stocks in various countries (China-Taiwan, US, Canada) of the "old" New Zealander and Chilean harvest meant overseas demand was quite slow during the first part of the campaign (October-November).
The situation is therefore very different from 2014, when the frost that hit Chile meant no produce was available already in September.
There is a bit of pressure in the North European market exerted by the Greek produce, as production has increased and Russia is no longer an outlet. Prices are too low and not acceptable for Italian exporters.
Anyway Italy is starting to sell on the European markets as the fruit has reached the necessary Brix levels. "We need to stand out and obtain higher prices than the Greek product."
"We are confident, especially on seeing the excellent quality of much of the produce. Demand should be good, so hopefully quotations will be too until early June 2016."
Author: Rossella Gigli