EUROPEAN APPLE AND PEAR CROP FORECASTS

August 9, 2014

(ISTANBUL, TURKEY) ― More than 260 representatives of the international apple and pear sector met on the occasion of the 38th Prognosfruit Conference on 7th August 2014 in Istanbul (Turkey). On this occasion, WAPA (World Apple and Pear Association) released the 2014 European apple and pear crop estimates. The 2014 apple production in the EU will increase by 9% compared to the crop of last year. Regarding pears, European growers predict a decrease by 2% compared to last year.

More specifically for apples, the 2014 European crop is forecasted to be 11.893.000 T. This production is 12% higher than the average for the last three years. In regard to varieties, Golden Delicious production will increase by 2% to 2.587.000 T; Gala by 7% to 1.294.000 T; Idared by 4% at 1.096.000 T and Red Delicious by 6% to 635.000 T. In other Northern Hemisphere countries crops are also expected to increase compared to last year, namely USA (+11%), Russia (+4%) and Ukraine (+10%), while production will decrease in China (-7%), Turkey (-24%) and the Balkans (-31%).

The forecast for pears is that the total crop in 2014 will be 2.272.000 T. This is 1% lower than the average crop of the last three years. In 2014 the Conference variety will decrease by 1% to 889.000 T. However, Abate F will increase by 17% to 356.000 T, but William BC will decrease by 9% to 256.000 T. Elsewhere in the Northern Hemisphere crops have either increased compared to last year, such as in USA (+0,3%), Russia (+4%) and Ukraine (+2%), or decreased, such as in China (-4%) and Turkey (-29%).

The experts attending the 2014 Prognosfruit conference, were of the view that the coming crop in the European continent will be nicely balanced taking into account the larger crop in the Northern and Central part of the EU but with a lower crop in some Southern EU Member States, the Balkans and Turkey. The coming season could consequently start on a positive note with very importantly no overlap of stocks from last season.

It was also noted that the excellent climatic conditions across Europe at the various critical times of the growing season, have combined to produce outstanding quality and maturity of the apples and pears grown in the EU this year. Sizes are larger than previous seasons, with fewer counts to be sold. Experts report that the crop will be one week earlier compared to average picking date and almost three weeks earlier compared to last year. This will have the effect of extending the marketing season.

Despite a number of market uncertainties due to the tense international geopolitical situation, the European sector is committed to address any market access challenges and at the same time to explore new opportunities within emerging markets or markets with reduced availability. The high quality of the crop will provide strong marketing advantages to gain new customers and consumers.

Daniel Sauvaitre, Vice-president of WAPA and Hans Van Es, Chair of the Prognosfruit Coordination Committee are agreed that: “The larger crop will offer some growth opportunities with all varieties and the outstanding quality of both apples and pears this season will match consumers’ expectations. It will also allow the European industries to explore new markets around the world resulting in a strengthen position of European apples and pears on international markets.”

A summary report of the new European crop can be downloaded on the WAPA website: www.wapa-association.org

Source: World Apple and Pear Asociation

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