In a very memorable year for Egyptian citrus in terms of quality, but difficult in terms of commercial challenges, Egyptian citrus exporters want to maintain attractive prices. Ms. Fatima Elzhraa Tarek El Hadary, export sales executive at Alsolimania, said: "This year is very favorable for us in Egypt, we expect a good quality crop and a successful season. Our prices will remain suitable for customers despite the increase in the cost of raw materials, fuel and sea freight".
Alsolimania is one of the largest producers and exporters of citrus in Egypt, with volumes expected to reach 13,000 tons this year, an increase of 10% over last season. The season will begin in early December with the varieties Navel and Baladi, then Valencia, followed by some varieties of Lemon and Mandarin. Ms. Fatimah Elzhraa said: "We are currently in the phase of harvest preparation and monitoring of quality. We decided to slow down a little the harvesting operation to give more time to the fruits to take color".
Ms. Fatimah Elzhraa expects prices to remain stable compared to last season. "At Alsolimania, we have control over our costs because we have our own packing house. We will maintain the same price level, with a small increase at the beginning of the season and a gradual return to stable prices."
The company exports to customers in Russia, China, France, Italy, Germany, Australia, India and Bangladesh. Ms. Fatimah Elzhraa said: "We expect a high demand this winter from the EU. We aim to increase our exports to China and enter other destinations in the Far East. We are implementing new logistic solutions for long transit destinations, and monitoring our fruit during the transit to ensure the quality of our products." The novelty this year is that the company will also sell in the Egyptian domestic market for the first time through contracts with major supermarket chains.
The company has made investments to improve its packaging facilities. Mrs. Fatimah Elzhraa explains: "Our customers have been satisfied with the quality of our products so far. However, we have received feedback suggesting to improve the packaging, which we will do promptly."
Alsolimania will be exhibiting at the Food Africa fair in Cairo from December 5 to 7.