China Citrus Annual 2009

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For marketing year (MY) 2009, China’s total citrus production is forecast to rise 5 percent to 23 million metric tons (MMT), fueled primarily by favorable weather conditions. Citrus acreage is forecast at 2.07 million hectares, up 2 percent from the previous year. Orange production is estimated to increase by 6 percent to 6.35 MMT because new plantings have reached full production. Fruit quality is generally good in terms of taste and appearance, but sizes are smaller due to a drought that affected certain provinces. MY 2009 tangerine production is forecast at 13.3 MMT, up a mere 5 percent because farmers invested less into their orchards due to poor sales last year (this also caused fruit quality to drop). For MY 2009, frozen concentrated orange juice (FCOJ) and Not-From-Concentrate (NFC) production (cumulatively -all data is converted to a FCOJ value-) is estimated at 15,500 MT, up 10 percent largely due to growing demand for NFC juice.

MY 2009 orange imports are estimated at 79,000 MT, up 20 percent on large foreign exportable supplies and strong domestic demand for high quality fruit. For MY 2009, mandarin imports are forecast at 10,000 MT, down 9 percent due to reduced foreign exportable supplies. Driven by a 10 percent decline in U.S. lemon production, MY 2009 Chinese lemon imports are projected at 8,000 MT, down 5 percent from the previous year. Grapefruit imports are stable at 6,000 MT. FCOJ imports are forecast at 44,000 MT, up 3 percent because of steady demand and low stocks.

Overall, citrus exports are expected to be strong. For MY 2009, orange and mandarin exports are forecast at 185,000 and 960,000 MT, up 20 and 30 percent on increased demand from South East Asian countries and Russia. Meanwhile, pomelo exports are forecast at 97,000 MT, down 5 percent from last year due to weak demand from the EU market. Canned citrus exports are forecast at 270,000 MT, down 10 percent because of lower global demand and EU anti-dumping duties.

Joshua Emmanuel Lagos
Wang Tong
Wu Bugang