Dried Fruit

Prunes: France cannot surpass last year's result

May 4, 2022 3:30 PM, Der AUDITOR
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PARIS/SACRAMENTO. The prune market is again characterised by differing results in the main growing regions this year. While Chile's crop shows an average result, market players fear that the crop in France will be as low as last year.

Chile and Argentina

Market players fear that the supply of prunes on the international market could remain tight. Although Chile achieved an average result of around 87,000 mt, the experts at Chelmer Foods report that low carry-over stocks, a shortage of large fruit and increasing exports to the Asian region are only providing limited relief in the market. In other South American growing countries, such as Argentina, the crop is said to have reached a disappointing result.

USA and France

US production, however, should be able to achieve an average result in 2022/2023. Urgently needed rainfall in the winter months was able to supply the soils with moisture and replenish resources after the drought of previous years had left its mark. Nevertheless, the development of the coming months remains to be seen.

France's crop already experienced a setback last year, with a production of only 16,000 mt instead of the usual 35,000-45,000 mt of prunes. Now the frost period at the beginning of April is said to have caused considerable damage to the flowering trees and thus to the crop again. According to Chelmer Foods, it is not currently expected that prune production will exceed last year's result.

Prunes

Type

EUR/kg

Unpitted, 30/40

4.55

Unpitted, 50/60

5.60

Pitted, 40/50

5.50

FCA Spain

Imports shrunk by 16%

In the current season, prune shipments have declined significantly due to high prices and lower availability. For example, Germany imported 5,368 mt of prunes between September 2021 and February 2022, almost 16% less than this time last year. Although shipments from countries such as Serbia (+183% to 246 mt), Uzbekistan (+83% to 119 mt) and Turkey (+160% to 203 mt) increased noticeably in percentage terms, in total this additional import was hardly noticeable. The gap left by the lower availability in the main growing countries such as Chile (-10% to 2,245 mt), France (-19% to 319 mt) and the USA (-33% to 1,378 mt) was too large.

German prune* imports, in mt

Supplier

2020/21

2021/22

Diff.

Chile

2,499

2,245

-10.2%

USA

2,055

1,378

-32.9%

Netherlands

669

369

-44.8%

France

392

319

-18.6%

Serbia

87

246

182.8%

Turkey

78

203

160.3%

Uzbekistan

65

119

83.1%

Argentina

98

86

-12.2%

Others

424

403

-5.0%

Total

6,367

5,368

-15.7%

Federal Statistical Office of Germany / Sep-Feb

*08132000 Dried prunes

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