The World Citrus Organisation (WCO) on Nov. 15 projected that Northern Hemisphere citrus production will hit 28.98 metric tons in 2023. That’s up 12.21% compared to the prior year and 1.48% higher than the four-year average. It also exceeds the WCO’s forecast of 24.35 million tons for the Southern Hemisphere.
Oranges are forecast to account for 50% of Northern Hemisphere production; followed by soft citrus, also known as mandarins (29%); lemons (18%) and grapefruit (3%).
The WCO projected that approximately a third of the Northern Hemisphere production (9.48 million tons) will be exported. The export projection is 11.39% higher than for 2022 and 4.5% higher than the four-year average.
FIGURES BY COUNTRY
Turkey is forecast to lead the Northern Hemisphere in citrus production with 6.53 million tons. That’s an increase of 45% over the prior year. Oranges will be the primary variety produced at 2.06 million tons.
Spain is projected to produce 5.95 million tons, a decrease of 2% from the prior year. Oranges will be the leading variety produced at 2.64 million tons.
Egypt is projected to produce 5.4 million tons, a 10% increase over the prior year. Orange production is forecast at 3.7 million tons.
United States (U.S.) production is forecast at 4.51 million tons, up 1% from the prior year. Oranges will account for 2.48 million tons.
Italy is forecast to produce 2.58 million tons, up 6% from the prior year. Orange production is forecast at 1.6 million tons.
Morocco is projected to produce 2.01 million tons, up 15% from the prior year. Oranges will account for 930,000 tons.
Greece is projected to produce 1.1 million tons, down 7% from the prior year. Oranges will account for 830,000 tons.
Israel production is forecast at 530,000 tons, up 2% from the prior year. Israel is the only Northern Hemisphere country that will produce primarily soft citrus (170,000 million tons). Grapefruit (158,000 tons) and oranges (131,000 tons) aren’t far behind.
Tunisia expects 370,000 tons, up 25% from the prior year. Oranges will account for 226,000 tons.
The WCO Northern Hemisphere forecast was presented by Phillippe Binard, WCO secretary general.
A CLOSER LOOK AT U.S. PRODUCTION
The WCO broke down U.S. production by states, with California forecast to produce 3.4 million tons in 2023. It will be followed by Florida (931,000 tons), Texas (110,000 tons) and Arizona (54,000 tons).
See the first U.S. Department of Agriculture National Agricultural Statistics Service forecast for U.S. citrus production in 2023–24, expressed in boxes instead of tons.
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