It is mid season for South African and Chilean stone fruit exports as both locations are seeing minor delays, but are overall pleased with how the season is moving along.
After three rough years, South Africa is having a normal crop.
Hortgro, the organization that represents South Africa’s stone fruit growers, reported updated numbers in volumes with increases across the board. Plums are estimated to be up by 27% for the season, returning to a normal crop season while peaches and nectarines are also expected to be up by eight and 10 percent, respectively.
Icon Fruit reports more optimism compared to this time last year. Apricot export volumes are exceeding initial export estimates and are currently up 90% compared to last season. If current trends continue there could be 12 million cartons of plums.
This volume increase is due to a winter with good rains and cooler spring temperatures during the flowering period. The sizes of the stone fruit are bigger, which also helps increase the number of cartons that are exported.
Chile exporters have had some frustrations due to a slow start of the season and are just beginning to see normal sizes and volumes catching up to predicted numbers.
Verfrut North American expects good exports throughout January and February.
The company reports older varieties of plums with small sizes will not be sent to the U.S. because Americans prefer new varieties and larger sizes.