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Hazelnuts: high risk TMO price

April 5, 2022 11:32 AM, Der AUDITOR
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ORDU. In the second round of sales the TMO has raised the selling price for inshell hazelnuts to TRY 41/kg. Manufacturers, however, reckon that this price bears more risk than any rumours over possible crop damages. The recently issued EU imports for 2021 show a clear trend regarding demand.

TMO attempts to raise market price

As expected the TMO has issued a second round of sales for inshell hazelnuts in April over 20,000 mt. Intention is to sell 15,750 mt in Levant quality at a price of TRY 41/kg, 2,000 mt in Giresun quality at a price of TRY 41/kg and 2,250 mt in Sivrin quality for TRY 39/kg. Interested parties must pay a 10% deposit by 5 April. Although large exporters participated in the first round of sales in March when prices ranged at TRY 39/kg for Levant and Giresun hazelnuts, traders reckon that the prices the TMO has set now are completely unrealistic. Issue is that plenty of supplies are still available. Turkey witnessed a good crop over 800,000 mt in 2021 and carry-overs were quite high at the start of the season. Optimistic estimates state that farmers may still hold as much as 100,000 mt.

The TMO’s high prices are driven by political rather than rational decisions. With rumours still afloat over possible crop damages and the general election to be held in 2023 the state-run organisation is seizing the opportunity to drive up prices. Under normal circumstances the prices for raw kernels, size 11-13 mm, may well rise to at least TRY 82/kg, if inshell prices climb to TRY 41/kg. Manufactures are, however, weary of the TMO’s motifs, especially since many incurred heavy losses in 2020. As rumours over a bad crop were circulating in the market in March two years ago several manufactures were tricked to buy from the TMO with prices ranging at TRY 25/kg. As soon as the realisation, however, kicked in that plenty of stocks were available and production would be good prices quickly dropped to TRY 19/kg, there are, indeed, many parallels to the current sitaution. The prices for natural kernels, size 11-13 mm, range at EUR 5.35-5.45/kg (USD 5.89-6.00/kg) DAP Europe.

Hazelnuts, Turkey

Size

EUR/kg

USD/kg

Natural, 11-13 mm

5.40

5.94

Natural, 13-15 mm

5.35

5.89

Paste, UTZ

5.20

5.72

Organic paste

6.00

6.60

DAP Central Europe

Price declines anticipated

Traders also expect prices to drop this year. Not only are plenty of supplies available at present but the prospects for the new crop are also highly encouraging. Ferrero’s observers and the farmers agree that the crop is unharmed and that the size is satisfactory. Present estimates range at 650,000-680,000 mt, sudden frosts may, however, still occur in April, which is why the market is waiting for more reliable estimates in May. Although several mid-size companies and bakeries along with a few manufactures may still require some stocks, large confectioners and retailers are no longer actively purchasing this season. Buyers are in the comfortable position to be able to wait for attractive prices as long as no sudden frosts occur. Judging by the recently released import figures for 2021 buyers in the EU appear to be well-covered.

3% decline in EU imports

The EU imported 144,697 mt of hazelnuts worth EUR 849.544 million from non-EU member states in 2021. This is 3% less in terms of volume and 10% less in terms of value on the 149,037 mt worth EUR 945.323 million the EU imported in 2020. The import volume may have declined by 3% on the 149,037mt shipped to the EU in 2020, and yet it should be noted that it ranges nearly 7% higher than the five-year moving average of 135,309 mt imported to the EU in 2016-2020. Although the export value ranges as much as 10% lower than the EUR 945,323 million spent in 2020, which is a trend that is mainly driven the depreciation of the Turkish lira, it is only nominally lower than the five-year moving average of EUR 851.396 million for the years 2016-2020.

Within the EU, Italy shipped 27,637 mt of hazelnuts to other member states, which is 22% up on the 22,648 mt the country supplied within the EU in 2020. Italy, in fact, accounted for 58% of the total volume of 47,394 mt shipped within the EU in 2021. Germany, by contrast, features as leading importer for hazelnuts within the EU. With imports hitting 22,965 mt the country accounts for 46% of the total volume of 49,015 mt imported by the different member states within the EU. Germany, in fact, stepped up imports form other EU countries by 34% last year (2020 17,130 mt).

EU hazelnut imports in mt

Non-EU countries

2020

2021

Diff.

Turkey

116,301

113,764

-2.2%

Chile

13,760

13,360

-3.0%

Georgia

10,121

9,945

-1.8%

Azerbaijan

8,002

7,049

-2.0%

United States

407

486

19.2%

United Kingdom

391

31

-94.2%

Switzerland

26

24

-7.8%

Vietnam

-

22

-

South Africa

-

7

-

North Macedonia

0.005

5

9,628%

Others

28

5

-83.0%

Total

149,037

144,697

-3.0%

Eurostat (Comext)
08022200 fresh or dried hazelnuts or filberts Corylus spp., shelled and peeled

 

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