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Canned Deciduous Fruit Situation
(In Selected Countries)
|Production of canned peaches in selected countries for 2001/02 is estimated at 1.12 million metric tons, down 3 percent from the revised estimate of 1.16 million tons produced in 2000/01. World exports for the selected countries 2001/02 are forecast at 654,000 tons, up less than one percent from the preceding year. Canned pear production for 2001/02 is forecast at 139,500 tons, up 13 percent from the previous year. Exports of canned pears for 2001/02 are estimated at 89,000 tons, up 2 percent from last year=s level. Forecast Northern Hemisphere production of canned peaches for 2002/03 is placed at 900,600 tons, up 1 percent from this year’s level. Exports are forecast at 493,000 tons, down 6 percent from this year’s estimate of 522,000 tons.|
Regional and Country Highlights
The canned deciduous fruit sector is
suffering a market crisis throughout the world, due principally to an
overproduction of canned peaches, low prices, and increased competition
among the principal exporters: Greece, South Africa, Chile, and Australia.
Despite unfavorable weather during
January 2002, the clingstone peach crop does not appear to be seriously
reduced from last season’s level. Canned
peach output for the 2001/02 marketing year is now estimated at 407,000
tons, up nearly 11 percent from the November estimate and 10,000 tons over
the 2000/01 level. In fact,
last year’s output is the second largest on record after the 441,000
tons produced in 1999/2000. The
total supply available for export in the coming year is the third largest,
exceeded only by the quantities on hand during the two previous marketing
years. Exports last year set
a new record, reaching 420,000 tons, up 30,000 tons over the previous
record, set in 1995/96. Exports
for 2002/03 are forecast to be 395,000 tons.
Last year withdrawals
totaled 50,000 tons compared to 204,000 tons the year before. The quantity of peaches withdrawn from the market declined
due to the EU’s policy to phase out withdrawal payments by marketing
year 2003/04. Last year the
EU paid growers about 10.4 U.S. cents/kg for withdrawn fruit.
The maximum quantity available for this payment equaled 20 percent
of the total fruit marketed. This
included both freestone and cling peaches, for fresh and processed
markets. This coming
marketing year, the EU will reduce this quantity to 10 percent of the
total quantity marketed.
The price paid for withdrawn fruit
equaled almost 48 percent of the price of peaches delivered to processors,
(21.8 cents/kg). The
support to growers is provided through producer organizations.
This support is estimated to comprise about 20 percent of the price
(21.8 cents/kg) received by growers.
Thus, growers’ income is a function of a weighted average price
consisting of the withdrawal price, market price and EU subsidy.
Under the EU’s previous canned fruit
regime, the growers’ subsidy or guaranteed price was passed through the
processors. The EU paid the
processors a “processing aid,” which theoretically was to be included
in the price processors paid to the growers.
However, there was always a general concern among global
competitors that a portion of this aid was held back by processors and
used to maintain inefficient operations, acting as an indirect export
subsidy. As a result of the
reform of the canned fruit regime, principally the payment of subsidies to
producer organizations and the gradual elimination of the withdrawal aid,
the number of processing plants declined to 15, compared to 22 in
marketing year 2000/01 and to about 27 during the peak of the mid
1990’s. However, this
decline in the number of processing plants did not translate into a
decline in the capacity of fruit processing, which has always exceeded the
demand for fruit. Currently
most of the fresh fruit is processed in plants operating at two-thirds of
capacity. The Greek industry
claims that processors prefer not to increase output in order to stabilize
prices in international markets. However,
prices in the international markets may rise , if the quantity of fresh
fruit available to Greek processors declines in response to a total
elimination of subsidies to growers.
Greek exports set a record 420,000 tons
last year, due to an unprecedented supply of subsidized product and an
appreciating U.S. dollar. However
the appreciating dollar did not have a significant impact in Latin
America, as evidenced by protective action taken by several Latin American
countries, whose currency depreciated against the EURO.
Fundamentally, Greek prices last year were extremely low, resulting
in large exports and causing some import relief actions against Greek
shipments. Argentina initiated a countervailing duty of 12 percent on
top of a 35 percent tariff and a $0.5/kg safeguard measure. Brazil initiated an anti-dumping duty of 100 percent on top
of 16.5 percent tariff and an additional tariff of 55 percent for a
special listing of the product on an exception list.
The loss of these two markets contributed to expanded Greek
shipments into the United States.
As Greece solidifies its dominance in
the canned peach sector, Greek production of fruit mixtures is expected to
increase. Peaches are the
fundamental ingredient in a traditional fruit cocktail mixture.
Excess production of fresh peaches accompanied by surplus
processing capacity should, with proper management, provide a solid base
for a larger output of canned fruit mixtures.
Since 1997, Greek production of fruit mixtures has increased from
1,800 tons to over 28,000 tons in 2001.
Production for 2002 is forecast at 32,000 tons.
Italian canned peach, pear, and mixed
fruit output for 2001/02 are estimated at 21,000 tons, 46,000 tons and
73,000 tons, respectively. Forecast
production for the upcoming 2002/03 year is unchanged from these figures.
The competitive price of
Greek canned peaches on the international market forced Italy to rebuild
its stocks. Due to
large stocks, Italian canned peach imports are forecast to decline in
2002/03, whereas exports should remain stable.
Canned pear output for 2001/02 is
estimated at 46,000 tons up, 12,000 tons from the previous forecast.
The Italian canned mixture production has also been revised upward
from 68,000 tons reported in November to 73,000 tons.
Italian exports of canned pears and
mixtures increased in marketing year 2000/01, despite a decline in fruit
mixture output. In fact,
Italian canned pears and mixtures remain competitive on the international
market, due to the quality of Italian pears and their relatively low
From a marketing standpoint, canned
peaches and pears are generally considered to be a mature food product,
with little room for growth, due to competition from fresh fruit imports,
which are increasingly available throughout the year.
Fruit cocktail, however, is considered to be a convenience food
that still offers market opportunities, especially in export markets.
Canned pears and peaches are destined almost exclusively for the
catering industry in Italy, while canned mixtures are still consumed by
2002 canned fruit production (peaches, pears, apricots, and mixed fruit)
is placed at 168,000 tons, a decrease of 10 percent from a year earlier,
due to lower fresh production. Exports,
in particular to EU markets, are forecast to increase, due to strong
demand at premium prices.
lower output, exports of canned fruit in 2002 are expected to grow by 14
percent while domestic consumption will rise by 5 percent.
Of the total fresh fruit expected to be delivered for processing,
about 41,300 tons are apricots, 114,800 tons peaches, 57,442 tons pears,
and 213,552 tons mixed fruit. Total
canned fruit exports during 2001 decreased from the previous year to
around 129,400 tons.
Africa’s fruit canning industry is the fourth largest in the world. The
industry is made up of four main canners, Langerberg Foods, Sapco
of Delmonte Brand, Ashton, and Rhodes Fruit Farm Foods. Exports account
for 90 percent of all canned fruit production, 50 percent of which goes to
Europe. According to the Canning Fruit Producers Association (CFPA), the
canning fruit market is growing only slightly each year.
Not all of South Africa’s deliveries for processing are used for
canning. Depending on the quality, fruits are also processed for juice, or
pureed as pulp and baby food.
South Africa’s canned fruit exports to Europe
are still important, although sales to the Far East and the rest of the
world are constantly rising as a result of South Africa’s shift in
marketing strategy from Europe to other regions.
Under the SA/EU Trade Agreement, which became effective in January
2000, the South African canners have closely monitored their EU shipments
to get the maximum possible benefit from their allocated tariff quota. There has also been close liaison with government departments
and the South African Revenue Service (SARS) regarding the management of
the quotas. The 2000 quotas
were shared amongst the canners, based on their historical average share
of exports to the EU during the period 1996 to 1998.
Although this procedure complies with the SA/EU Free Trade
Agreement Protocol, it does not take into account shifts in individual
canner export patterns.
The FAS Attaché Report search
engine contains reports on the Canned Deciduous Fruit.
For information on production and trade, contact Robert Knapp
at 202-720-4620. For
information on marketing contact Kristan Kezar at 202-609-0556.)