EU Orange Production to Increase This Season

Ernie NeffInternational


European Union (EU) orange production is forecast at 6.5 million metric tons in 2020-21, a 5.2% increase over the previous season. The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) reported the EU forecast.

Expected orange production by country is 3.4 million metric tons for Spain, 1.85 million metric tons for Italy, 915,000 metric tons for Greece, 315,000 metric tons for Portugal and 20,000 metric tons for Cyprus. Portugal is expected to have decreased production from the previous season; the other countries expect production increases.

FAS reported that orange planted area in Europe is expected to remain flat at 278,960 hectares despite expected expansions in Spain and Italy that may not offset a reduced planting area in Portugal.

Although it still leads Europe in orange production, Spain has reduced its orange planted area by 8.4% over the last decade, FAS reported. Spain, with 141,130 hectares, has slightly more than half of the European planted area.

In 2020-21, orange consumption is expected to increase slightly compared to the previous season. During the COVID-19 pandemic, European consumers sought citrus fruits for their health benefits and as good natural sources of vitamin C, FAS reported.

Oranges are primarily consumed fresh in Europe. Oranges destined for processing constitute only about 18% of EU orange production.

The EU is a net importer of oranges. South Africa and Egypt continued to be the leading suppliers to the European market, mainly shipping to the Netherlands and Portugal. Other important suppliers are Morocco, Zimbabwe and Argentina.  

Spain is Europe’s main citrus supplier, with 90% of Spanish exports destined for other European markets.

“Valued at almost $1.4 billion, Spanish global orange exports rose in value 8.8%” compared to the previous season, FAS reported.

See the full report on EU citrus production.

Source: U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Foreign Agricultural Service

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