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Southern Hemisphere apple production to grow by 1.1%, while pear crop to decrease by 2.3%

The World Apple and Pear Association (WAPA) has released the Southern Hemisphere apple and pear crop forecast for the upcoming season in Berlin. According to the forecast, which consolidates the data from Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Chile, New Zealand, and South Africa, apple production is set to grow by 1,1% compared to 2023, while the pear crop is expected to decrease by 2,3%.

On Friday 9 February 2024, WAPA held its AGM, during Fruit Logistica in Berlin, FreshPlaza informs. This report has been compiled with the support of CAFI (Argentina), APAL (Australia), ABPM (Brazil), Fruits from Chile (Chile), New Zealand Apples and Pears (New Zealand), and Hortgro (South Africa), and therefore provides consolidated data from the six leading Southern Hemisphere countries.

Regarding apples, the Southern Hemisphere 2024 crop forecast suggests an increase of 1,1% to a total of 4.775.530 t compared to last year (4.725.574 t). South Africa is expected to maintain its lead as the largest producer with 1.396.659 t (+4,6 from 2023), followed by Brazil (1.100.000 t, in line with 2023), Chile (912.000 t, -8,4%), New Zealand (557.871 t, +14,7%), Argentina (501.000 t, -4,8%), and Australia (308.000 t, +5,8%). With 1.578.148 t, Gala is by far the most popular variety, with its volume remaining in line with 2023 although 11,4% below the average of the previous 3 years. Exports are also expected to increase (+8%) to reach 1.551.696 t. South Africa (+5,1%) and Chile (+5,3%), the two largest exporters, are both expected to increase their export volumes, reaching 572.280 t and 493.000 t respectively. Exports from New Zealand should grow by 22,2% (381.729 t in total), while lower export quantities are forecasted for Argentina (70.000 t, -4,1%) and Brazil (32.000 t, -10,6%).

Read also: Fresh apples for processing – a new popular export product in Europe

The Southern Hemisphere growers predict a slight decline in the pears crop (-2,3%), bringing the total to 1.465.800 t. Argentina (614.000 t), Chile (203.000 t), and Australia (72.000 t) are expected to decrease their production by 6%, 5,4%, and 2,7% respectively. South Africa’s production levels are forecasted to increase to 567.334 t (+3,4% from 2023), as well as New Zealand’s (+8,4%, with 9.066 t in total). Packham’s Triumph remains the most produced variety (508.000 t, with a slight 1,3% decrease compared to 2023), followed by Williams’ bon chrétien pears (300.082 t). Export figures are expected to be in line with 2023 with a total of 654.323 t.

European apple stocks stood at 3.851.098 t as of 1 January 2024, which is 4,6% lower than in 2023. The total of 582.587 t for European pears is 4,4% below the figures from 2023. On the other hand, stock figures are higher in the USA, both for apples (2.138.376 t, +33,6%) and for pears (169.474 t, +14,9%).

During the AGM Jeff Correa, Pear Bureau Northwest, USA, was elected as the President of the association. Nick Dicey, Hortgro, South Africa, is the Vice-President.

EastFruit

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