Nuts

Pistachios: global production declines by a quarter

March 16, 2022 2:10 PM, Der AUDITOR
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REUS/SACRAMENTO. In the three most important pistachio-producing countries, there will be significant crop declines in the 2021/22 season. Exporters are also facing various difficulties.

Good yields despite "off-year" in the USA

The International Nut and Dried Fruit Council (INC) reports that this season's US crop is relatively good at 529,000 mt despite the current "off-year", which is mainly due to the expanded acreage. The good weather conditions also contributed to the fact that the crop volume is a good 11% above that of the last season. In terms of quality, the nuts are smaller than average and show some damage from insect infestation.

Export demand remains strong and experts expect this to continue for the time being. Since the start of the season, the USA has shipped 190,209 mt domestically and overseas. The main European markets are seeing import increases, while additional tariffs between China and the USA and logistical problems are hampering trade with Asian export destinations. In the domestic market, however, buying interest is high because pistachios are the most popular snack nuts in the United States.

Iranian exporters lose out

A significant drop in production of almost 45% is expected in Iran this season. The market is already under pressure from the low 2021 crop, massive currency fluctuations and high export demand. The INC reports that some large farmers are withholding their goods to drive up prices further, while buyers on world markets are hesitant due to expensive pistachio kernel prices. Current estimates for the 2021/22 crop are 135,000 mt.

A massive problem for Iranian exporters is the re-imposed US sanctions. It is made virtually impossible for them to carry out transactions with foreign banks. A return to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) also seems hardly possible at present due to Russia's demands.

Pistachios

Type, origin

EUR/kg

USD/kg

Fandoghi, raw kernel pieces, Iran

12.50

13.39

Fandoghi, whole kernels, Iran

15.00

16.06

Inshell, Extra N1 18/20 NO, USA

8.40

9.00

FCA Spain

Turkish production declines by a good 70%

The decline in production in Turkey is even more drastic than in Iran. After the record crop of the previous season, the INC now expects a crop volume of only 89,000 mt, which is more than 70% less than last year. It must be said that farmers harvested as early as possible this season so that the trees have a longer preparation period befor the next harvest. Therefore, market players expect that the result in 2022/23 could be significantly better again - provided that drought or frost do not put a spanner in the works. Demand for Turkish pistachios is promising.

According to the INC, the world crop in the 2021/22 season will be a good quarter lower than in 2020/21. The current estimates are 795,300 mt, with production declines in Iran and Turkey having the greatest impact.

Pistachio production, inshell, in mt

Country

2020/21

2021/22

Diff.

USA

476,000

529,000

-8.2%

Iran

243,000

135,000

-44.4%

Turkey

302,000

89,000

-70.5%

Syria

20,700

22,000

6.3%

Greece

8,000

7,200

-10.0%

Afghanistan

4,500

5,900

31.1%

Spain

1,800

2,700

50.0%

Australia

3,000

2,300

-23.3%

China

1,500

1,200

-20.0%

Italy

1,200

1,000

-16.7%

Total

1,061,700

795,300

-25.1%

INC, February 2022

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