South Africa Orange Production Steady

Josh McGillCrop Forecast, International

Fresh orange production in South Africa is forecast at 1.63 million metric tons (MMT) in 2022–23, compared to 1.61 MMT in 2021–22, the U.S. Department of Agriculture Foreign Agricultural Service (USDA FAS) reported.

South Africa
Midknight orange

The Western Cape province was affected by damage from hailstorms and strong winds, which may hamper production. Additionally, the Eastern Cape province received heavy rains, which could decrease production. However, other orange-producing regions have experienced good weather conditions with sufficient water for irrigation.

The area planted with oranges accounts for about 45% of South Africa’s approximately 96,277 hectares of citrus orchards. The orange acreage grew by almost 4% over the past seven years.

Limpopo province is the leading orange-growing region in South Africa, accounting for 48% of total area, followed by the Eastern Cape (23%) and Western Cape (14%) provinces.

Valencias account for two-thirds of total orange area, with Navels accounting for the other third. The predominant cultivar planted is Midknight, representing 26% of total area, followed by Valencia Late (10%), Delta (9%) and Turkey (7%) cultivars. Other cultivars planted in South Africa include Bennie, Palmer, Cambria, Bahianinha and Washington.

South Africa’s exports of oranges are forecast to grow by 5% in 2022–23 to a record level of 1.36 MMT. South Africa exported 1.3 MMT of oranges in each of the prior two years.

South Africa exports oranges to more than 100 countries around the world. The European Union remains its largest export market, accounting for almost 40% of total foreign sales.

South Africa’s orange imports are expected to decrease to 3,000 metric tons (MT) in 2022–23, down from 5,000 MT the prior year. Relatively small volumes of oranges are usually imported into South Africa in November and December to close supply gaps and satisfy year-end demand.

See the full USDA FAS report on South African citrus here.

Source: USDA FAS

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