In 2021-22, grapefruit production in Turkey is expected to increase 5% over the previous season, totaling 250,000 metric tons (MT), the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) reported. In 2020-21, production reached 238,000 MT.
Since production costs are high, producers are not satisfied with low consumption and the low sales prices at orchards and wholesale markets. Additionally, orchard areas and bearing trees have decreased in Turkey.
In 2021-22, grapefruit consumption is expected to increase to 98,000 MT due to high production. Domestic demand is very small in Turkey, and the fruit is mostly consumed as fresh-squeezed juice. In 2020-21, grapefruit was only 3% of the total domestic citrus consumption at 77,000 MT.
The market price of grapefruit has increased this year due to greater demand from the domestic market for fruit with high content of vitamin C after the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic.
In 2021-22, grapefruit exports are expected to be 5% lower than in 2020-21, due to the lack of export demand. In 2020-21, exports of the fruit were valued at $89 million. Exports were mostly to Russia, Poland and Ukraine.
Due to climate change, especially extreme temperatures, Turkey is struggling to maintain sweetness in grapefruit, and most produced fruit are sour and bitter. For this reason, Turkey is not a stable supply market but is a backup possibility if the other large exporting countries are not able to produce enough of the variety in a given year. Turkey has a geographic advantage for exports of citrus fruit to Iraq. However, grapefruit exports to Iraq are very small due to a lack of traditional grapefruit consumption in Iraq.
Recently, Turkey has been authorized to export grapefruit to Japan. However, many shipments have not met the cold-chain treatment procedures during transport that are required by Japanese authorities and have been rejected upon arrival.
Source: U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Foreign Agricultural Service
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