While Egypt has totally closed the window for Israel’s 2023 table grape exports, producers and exporters are not worried due to strong local market demand. Israel’s 2023 harvest started early last month with the earliest greenhouse grown grapes being harvested.
A young block of table grape vines in Nazareth Village, Israel.
According to Eitan Zvi, Marketing VP from the second largest Israel based exporter Galilee Exports, they are not planning to export any grapes this season. The local market seems to have recovered fully after Covid-19. “At the moment nobody in Israel is planning to export any grapes. In the previous year’s summer of 2020 and 2019 only a few hundred tons were exported. The domestic market is very strong, while we have not really exported since Covid-19.”
He also said over the past few years Israel could not compete with the lower prices of Egypt and India. Egypt as a neighbouring country has closed to Israel because they are also currently harvesting and exporting table grapes to their local and world markets. “Egypt totally closed the window for Israel due to their huge amounts of grapes, which are too low for Israel to compete with,” comments Zvi.
Producers in Israel are packing Early Sweet. The very early ARRA Honey Pop and ARRA Sugar Drop, grown under greenhouses in the Jordan Valley, has already been packed during last month. The next varieties to follow are Superior and Big Pearl, followed by Timpson and Thompson seedless during July. Israel’s 2022 season finished with around 70,000 tons, the industry is expecting around the same volume for the current 2023 season.