Nuts

Walnuts: production takes a hit

November 13, 2023 at 10:57 AM , Der AUDITOR
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REUS. With the harvests coming in the International Nut and Dried Fruit Council (INC) has been prompted to revise the production estimates for walnuts.

Downturn in China

In fact, the INC issued downward revisions for the two leading producers China and the USA, whereas production estimates range higher for Ukraine, Romania and Moldova. Total inshell production now stands 1% lower than in July at 2.58 million mt. Issues are frost and drought as well as lack of labour in China as well as revised USDA estimates. Cool autumn weather conditions, however, ensure a good quality of the crop in China. Expectation is that total supply will range 1% lower in 2023/2024 than last season at 2.79 million mt.

Global walnut production (in mt)

Country

2022/23

2023/24

Diff.

China

1,400,000

1,350,000

-3.4%

USA

678,500

689,460

1.6%

Chile

187,424

170,400

-9.1%

Ukraine

70,000

78,000

11.4%

Turkey

48,000

55,000

14.6%

France

37,000

38,000

2.7%

Iran

46,500

40,000

-14.0%

Romania

30,000

34,500

15.0%

India

31,000

28,000

-9.7%

Argentina

25,000

20,000

-20.0%

Moldova

17,800

21,300

19.7%

Hungary

13,500

14,000

3.7%

Italy

18,370

12,850

-30.1%

Georgia

8,200

8,000

-2.4%

Australia

13,500

7,000

-48.2%

Others

16,500

15,000

-9.1%

Total

2,641,294

2,581,510

-2.3%

INC November 2023, in-shell basis

US production to range lower

The USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) reduced the total production estimates for 2023/2024 by 30,000 short tons in October. Current projections stand at 760,000 short tons (689,400 mt). Reason is that bearing acres range at a lower 375,000 acres, whereas they were initially projected at 385,000 acres. NASS will issue another update on acreage in November, which may contain further reductions as abandoned or stressed orchards have not been taken into consideration so far. Cooler temperatures also extended harvesting into November. The industry is, however, upbeat about quality as a rainy winter and spring improved soil moisture and chill hours were good.

California walnuts, inshell

Acreage and production

2022

2023

Diff.

Bearing acres

400,000

375,000

-6.3%

Trees per acre

80.0

81.0

1.25%

Per bearing acre/US ton

1.88

2.03

8.0%

Total production (US ton)

752,000

760,000

1.1%

USDA NASS 2023 California Walnut Objective Measurement Report

Price slump in Europe

Chandler walnut prices from Chile dipped in Europe at the start of November but have now started to make a recovery. Chile, in fact, exported a record 130,833 mt of walnuts (in-shell equivalent) in 2022/2023 as Chilenut reports. Although many new plantations are bearing fruit, water supplies are a problem in the country. US Chandler prices have slumped in Europe in the past three weeks and have also recorded a small recovery in November.

Walnuts

Type, origin

USD/kg

EUR/kg

Chandler, Jumbo large, inshell, USA

1.95

1.83

Chandler, 30-32 mm, inshell, Chile

2.70

2,54

Chandler, 80 LHP, USA

5,89

5.54

Chandler, 80 LHP, Chile

6.95

6.45

FCA Spain

 

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