Experts from the associations of agricultural producers of Moldova believe that due to the large precipitation in spring and in the first half of summer, the apple harvest in the country will exceed 500 thousand tons (in 2020 – about 430 thousand tons, 2019 – 610 thousand tons, 2018 – 665 thousand tons). Comparing to last year, when apples were of low weight due to a severe drought, the forecasted yield increase for this year looks significant. However, if we compare to the maximum apple yields (in 2018-2019), the forecast for the production of the main Moldovan fruit this year may seem too cautious. What are the reasons?
Over the past four to five years, experts from fruit growers’ organizations have noted a downward trend in the total area of apple plantations in the country. During this period, it decreased by 3-4 thousand hectares and the area of fruit-bearing apple orchards is likely to be slightly less than 50 thousand hectares in 2021. But this will not significantly affect the final harvest.
The main problem, according to experts, “is differing levels of agricultural technologies in apple orchards”. This year, due to rains, many horticultural enterprises did not manage to keep the spread of scab in apple orchards under control. Large enterprises could not sanitize in the short periods between rains, or the efficiency was low. Small farmers saved on pesticides or services (mechanized spraying).
As a result, many agronomists note that “by the beginning of August the apples of autumn varieties are large, but many of them are affected by diseases and will be suitable only for processing.”
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