AU: Citrus export figures 'exciting' at $262.6m

Citrus exports have produced ‘exciting’ numbers for the month of October, and the 2015 season, surpassing industry expectations of a $250m forecast. Total export volumes have now been released and were up 29% on the 2014 season to 187,994 tonnes, valued at $262.6 million. That number represents 94% of the 2015 season, and the first 10 months of the year.

Navel oranges completed their season during the last month, and orange exports were 20% higher for the period, at 136, 727 tonnes. Oranges formed 73% of all citrus exports, with mandarins making up 25%, with 47,734 tonnes. Other citrus, which can include grapefruit and lemons, made up the remaining 2%. 

Prices for oranges averaged AUD $1.28 per kilogram FOB in October 2015, up 8%. Mandarins fetched an average of $1.67. Combined key measures showed an average price of $1.40 across oranges, mandarins and other citrus for October.

Exports peaked in July and August, with 42,389 and 45,362 tonnes respectively leaving Australian shores (almost one quarter of total exports).

Hong Kong and China accepted 53% more than at the same time last year, and were the dominant markets, according to Citrus Australia’s CEO, Judith Damiani. Hong Kong accepted 38,026 tonnes, and China 28,885 tonnes, followed by Japan with 28,534 tonnes and the United Arab Emirates with significantly less, 13,266 tonnes. The last of the top five export markets was the United States with 10,186 tonnes. 

Australian navel oranges were in demand in the United States, and trade to the country increased 34% on last year. South Korean trade increased eight fold, for a different reason, the reduction of tariffs following the signing of an FTA with Australia.

The only market to take significantly less, however, was Indonesia. In July Indonesia banned foreign citrus imports for at least 3 months, and overall this resulted in 23% less imports from Australian growers, at 8,825 tonnes. The results impacted that market, but not the performance of exports as a whole, the report, prepared by Fresh Intelligence Consulting for Citrus Australia says. Three weeks ago a trade delegation led by Federal Minister Andrew Robb went to Indonesia seeking urgent talks with Jakarta authorities, as the ban may be extended until 2016.

For more information
Judith Damiani, CEO
Citrus Australia
Phone: +61 (0) 3 5023 6333

 

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