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A difficult season for Moroccan citrus

The Moroccan citrus seasons have been suffering from the severe impact of a persistent drought. Volumes are down for the second year running, and prices have also been impacted. Stephanie de Wit, CEO of Agribianco, describes "a difficult season, but one with good outcomes".

"The last two years have been difficult, with a dry climate and very little rain. The last two winters have not been as cold with climate change having an obvious impact. Many growers had to make tough choices on irrigation and the field that should take preference and some even cut some trees to reduce water consumption. Given the weather conditions, we still reached decent volumes," says Stephanie.

The exporter continues, "Despite everything, we did really well in terms of quality. At the beginning of the season, we were expecting small sizes, but we eventually had an even distribution of sizes. At Agri Bianco, despite all the climate-related issues, we have no quality complaints this season at all."

"Last season, we had good prices due to lower supply. But this season, the drop in volumes has been accompanied by many other challenges. This is due to abundant supply on the international market, with huge volumes coming from Turkey and Egypt, and the clementine season from Spain was late with unexpected volumes."

The drop in volumes affected all varieties, says Stephanie. "Nadorcott production was down by 10%, and prices were at times lower than last despite good quality. There was also a drop in volumes of clementines, and smaller sizes, although prices were very good. The season has just begun for oranges, with production also down but demand has been good. Orange prices are not yet clear, so we'll see how the market moves."

The Moroccan campaign was also marked by supply chain disruptions, for different reasons. Stephanie explains, "We were unable to export the usual volumes to Middle Eastern markets and China due to the crisis in the Red Sea. There were also other shipping problems, which worsened in February onwards, for different reasons including the weather and the war in the Middle East."

"Over all we are happy about the past season and already planning for the coming one," concludes the exporter.

For more information:
Stephanie de Wit
Agri Bianco
Email: [email protected]