South Africa`s production of grapefruit, oranges, lemons and limes will increase in the 2017/2018 marketing year (MY). This is according to a Global Agriculture Information Network (GAIN) report by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Foreign Agricultural Services, released in December 2017.
This is based on the increase in area planted in the main growing regions of Limpopo, Eastern Cape and Mpumalanga. These areas have also seen a return to normal weather conditions, but the current drought in the Western Cape will impact this region.
The drought has severely restricted the availability of irrigation water in the 2017/2018 MY and will constrain the production of tangerines/mandarins, lemons/limes and oranges in the Western Cape. The production of tangerines/mandarins is forecast to decrease by 9%.
Nonetheless, South Africa’s citrus exports to the United States are expected to grow further, spurred by the continued market access through the African Growth Opportunity Act (AGOA). Grapefruit exports will increase by 8% due to the increase in production and strong demand in global markets, especially Europe and Asia. –Ursula Human, AgriOrbit