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Almonds: new plantings not attractive

April 30, 2024 at 11:54 AM , Der AUDITOR
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SACRAMENTO. According to the 2023 California Almond Nursery Sales Report issued by the United States Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) on 25 April 2024 only 4.02 million almond trees were sold between 01 June 2022 and 31 May 2023.

Crop value at stake in 2020s

In conjunction with the tress per acre of new plantings this shows that as little as 31,000 acres were planted between June 2022 and May 2023. This marks an eleven-year low and indicates how unsustainable it has become for Californian farmers to grow almonds.

The report further highlights that the value of the crop has deteriorated in the 2020s. While the crop reached the third-highest value on record of USD 6.17 billion in 2019 when production stood at 3.56 million pounds, the value has remained below the USD 6 billion threshold ever since. Although bouncing back to USD 5.35 billion in 2021, the crop year 2022 saw a downfall to USD 3.54 billion with the price per pound sporting a ten-year low of USD 1.40.

Expectation is that this trend will persist. International prices have already started to drop as this year’s production is expected to rebound. Initial estimates for the 2024 crop range at 2.97 billion pounds. The value of production has not been estimated for the 2023 crop, but prices have been attractively low this season so far. In addition, the report highlights that yields ranged 7% lower in 2023 than in 2022 and that production declined by 5% to 2.44 billion pounds.

California almond acreage and production

Value

2022

2023

Diff.

Bearing acres

1,350,000

1,380,000

2.2%

Yield per acre

1,910

1,770

-7.4%

Production (million pounds)

2,580

2,440

-5.5%

USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service 25/04/24

Bearing acres to range lower than anticipated

The 2024 Standing Acreage – Initial Estimate issued by Land IQ in collaboration with the Almond Board of California on 24 April 2024 highlights that bearing acres may range a bit lower than the NASS estimate of 1.38 million acres for the 2023 crop. Land IQ set the initial estimate at 1.37 million acres of bearing almonds for 2023/2024. Estimated removals stand at 70,728 acres, final figures will be released in November.

 

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