South African table grape intakes up with exports down significantly
The South African table grape industry has packed over 6 million more cartons year-on-year, but has shipped 5.2 million cartons fewer to international markets.
The delays in the Port of Cape Town remain challenging, with the situation showing some improvement, although still too slow given the peak shipping weeks that are still ahead.
Exports to the EU up to week three are down over 3 million cartons year-on-year while the U.K. is seeing a decrease of 1.3 million cartons.
The first crop estimate remains unchanged with the Northern Provinces and Olifants River regions that will, due to challenging weather conditions, likely only reach the lower limits of the estimate.
SATI estimates an intake volume range of between 70.6 million and 77.7 million cartons, with the mid-point at 74.2 million cartons, which is close to the volume packed during the 2020/2021 season.
The three largest regions namely the Orange, Berg and Hex River are all expected to reach and possibly even slightly exceed the upper limit of the estimate.
Week one had the highest combined intake of 6.9 million cartons.
The Northern Provinces, are in the last few weeks of table grape packing with the cultivars including Crimson, Scarlotta, Sweet Globe and Autumn Crisp.
The Orange River region is in the last few weeks of full scale packing. The Blouputs area is nearly done with packing.
The recent heatwave together with general climate challenges caused a decrease of about 25% in production volumes in certain cases from the Olifants River region.
Despite these challenges the region is still expected to reach the lower limit of their crop estimate.
Producers are packing Timson, Allison, Crimson, Red Globe, Sweet Celebration and Krissy.
The Berg River region is still experiencing a good packing season with higher volumes than last year. Packing of Midnight, Tawny, Sable and Prime will end soon.
Packing of early cultivars went well in the Hex River region and producer are currently packing Sweet Globe, Crimson and Ivory.
The quality of grapes remains generally good while early volumes are in line with estimates, according to the report.