WCO: greater potential, living with uncertainty

Citrus fruit production from the southern hemisphere will increase by almost 5% according to data from the World Citrus Association (WCO).

However, the global economic situation means that a campaign without any setbacks cannot be guaranteed.

This increase does not guarantee a problem-free campaign marked by the logistics shortage and delays and the rise in prices for inputs and energy.

Citrus fruit from the southern hemisphere are seeing a significant purchase potential in the north; therefore, the resolving of the logistics problems must be a top priority and, clearly, it does not seem that these are going to be sorted out in a question of days or months.

All of this on a scenario that could even leave important amounts of fruit on the trees in order to not incur in greater expenses.

The member countries of the Association have communicated their production figures, indicating that, overall, production will increase by 4.85% compared to the previous year, reaching 24,832,270 tonnes.

The data was supplied during the Annual General Meeting of the organization and they included the productions from Argentina, Australia, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Peru, South Africa and Uruguay.

The event was also used to revalidate the Spanish and South African representation in their co-presidency positions, as representatives of the organization for another two years. Spain is represented by José Antonio García, from the Interprofesional del limón y pomelo, Ailimpo (the Lemon and grapefruit Inter-professional Association), and South Africa, by Justin Chadwick from the Citrus Growers Association.

From the commercial point of view, and always theoretically, due to global uncertainties caused in the logistics and the raw materials, the export prospects are also rising, with an increase of 4.91% compared to 2021. This projection in exports reaches a figure of around 4,140,547 tonnes.

Citrus fruits that are to be used in the juice processing industry will reach around 13,210,832 tonnes, showing an increase of 8.32% with respect to 2021.

Orange production will rise by 5.01% and is expected to reach 16,596,973 tonnes. The category that groups together ‘soft citrus’ (mandarines and clementines) will remain stable, with a slight drop of -0.11%, with a total of 3,044,652 tonnes.

Lemons are the category seeing the greatest growth, with +8.28% and a volume of 4,754,260 tonnes in total, while grapefruits will decrease slightly by 0.58% compared to 2021, reaching 436,386 tonnes. The WCO already includes 34 associations and private companies around the world.

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