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Moldova table grape season has started: higher quality but lower prices than expected

About two weeks ago, a company started harvesting table grapes of the late variety “Moldova” in the south of Moldova. This variety is also the main export variety, up to 90% in the (its share has been increasing over the past few years, as local growers continue to replace plantations of table grapes of early varieties).

Contrary to gloomy forecasts, due to the drought, the quality of production is generally within the range of ratings from “medium” to “high”. The August precipitation contributed to the ripening, and the rains in September have not yet provoked significative cracking.

Bursting berries, of course, occur, but they are removed during the sorting process. At the moment, the only complaint that can no longer be corrected is a significant number of small bunches (some growers tried to save on fertilizers). In rain-fed and poorly maintained vineyards, the size of both bunches and berries is small, but there is not too much of such production. The sugar content of berries on many plantations is already 17-18%.

Wholesale prices for growers are still at a four-year low – an average of 6.5 MDL/kg ($ 0.33/kg). However, it is worth clarifying that while sales are small, the first “Moldova” table grapes batches of medium quality, are mainly sold for the domestic fresh market. Export grade batches are still being accumulated and sorted in fruit storage facilities and deliveries will begin in the coming days. In this regard, it is quite possible that the prices for high-quality grapes “Moldova” will soon grow to the level of 2020-2021.


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