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[Press Release] Prognosfruit 2023: First Apple and Pear Crop Forecast Released

August 05, 2023

This content has been published as provided by its author. It has only been modified from its original version to follow Produce Report editorial guidelines and for necessary website formatting.

Aug. 3, 2023Prognosfruit 2023 is currently taking place in Trentino, Italy, gathering more than 300 delegates from the apple and pear sector from Europe and beyond. During the first sessions of the conference, the apple and pear crop forecast estimates for the upcoming season were released.

In 2023, the apple production in the European Union for the top producing countries contributing to the forecast is estimated to decrease by 3.3% compared to last year, to a total of 11,410,681 metric tons. However, this year’s crop is in line with the average of the previous three years (+0.3%). Regarding the main varieties, Golden Delicious is set to increase by 11.7% to a total of 2,167,899 metric tons. Gala, the second-largest variety, is expected to grow by 4.8% (1,527,179 metric tons in total). Both Red Delicious and Idared, on the other hand, are expected to decrease in production (−10% and −6.1%, respectively).

The EU pear crop for 2023 is estimated to decrease by 12.9% compared to last year’s crop with a total of 1,745,632 metric tons. This decline is due to the stark decrease in Italy’s production (−63% compared to 2022) as well as a reduction in the French and Dutch volumes (−28.6% and −3.1%, respectively). In 2023, the production of Conference pears is estimated to increase by 8%, reaching 928,081 metric tons. William BC pear production, on the other hand, is expected to decrease by 36.8%, while Abate Fetel production is forecasted to plummet to 52,846 metric tons (−69.3%).

The European trends are similar to those of other countries in the Northern Hemisphere, such as China (whose apple crop will stay stable at 37.2 million metric tons), while the United States is expecting an apple crop of 4.5 million metric tons (3.6% down from 2022). India’s apple crop is also expected to decrease by more than 30% (1.9 million metric tons in total). Pear production in the United States is forecasted to decline by 3.7% (502,000 metric tons in total), while China’s is projected to increase by 10% (17.6 million metric tons).

World Apple and Pear Association Secretary General Philippe Binard commented on the forecast figures: “The season is starting on a positive background based on a relatively low crop, no overlap with the Southern Hemisphere, empty stocks from the previous season, and the ongoing renovation of orchards.” He added, “We will need to continue monitoring the climatic conditions, as well as mitigating pests and diseases, while dealing with geopolitical and market access issues.” Looking to the future, Binard concluded, “There will be great opportunities to stimulate apple and pear consumption in the upcoming season, while raising the prices to match the quality and the environmental, nutritional, and health benefits of apples and pears.”

Images: World Apple and Pear Association

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