Harvest of apples in Moldova may be higher than preliminary pessimistic forecast


Harvest of apples in Moldova may be higher than preliminary pessimistic forecast

05/21/2020

To date, from Moldova were exported in the marketing season 2019-20. more than 270 thousand tons of apple

Conclusions that, according to EastFruit, as a result of the May frosts and the ongoing drought, gardeners from Moldova will lose about 20-25% of the apple crop 2020 – this is an overly pessimistic forecast. It is based on the first, very emotional reaction of farmers from the northern and individual central regions of the country to recent, very unexpected frosts minus 4-5 degrees Celsius. With a detailed analysis of the situation in the apple sector of the whole country, a reduction in yield by about 10% seems more realistic at the moment. Of course, the phenomenon of the June fruit fall is still ahead, as well as the risks of habitation and the spread of various pathogens in apple orchards. Nevertheless, taking into account all possible troubles, it can be assumed that the apple harvest in Moldova this year will be about 550 thousand tons (in 2019 – 595 thousand tons). This opinion was expressed by Andrei Zbanka, a farmer, gardener, expert of the FARM Federation of Agricultural Producers of Moldova at the First International Apple Online Conference of the EastFruit project “Apple Predictions”.

The conference was organized with the support of FAO and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), the Ukrainian Fruit and Vegetable Association (UPAA), the international analytical project Fruit-Inform and the FARM Federation of Agricultural Producers of Moldova.

According to Andrei Zbanka, due to unfavorable weather conditions, which more than once can seriously disturb gardeners before harvesting the main harvest of the “autumn apple”, the quality of the fruit can be relatively low. As in some other European countries, a small apple can also make up a significant share of the crop in Moldova. It is possible that, as in the past few years, up to 45% of the apple crop in the country will go to industrial processing. But at the same time, there is reason to hope that at least 45% of the fruits of the new crop will be exported. In Moldova, hundreds of hectares of new intensive and superintensive apple orchards equipped with drip irrigation and hail protection systems come into fruiting every year, and post-harvest infrastructure is also developing – this gives an increase in the export resource of products of a fairly high quality. Consequently, even in a year with abnormally difficult weather conditions, the supply of quality apples for export from the Republic of Moldova may not be reduced.

Read also: Apple harvest in Georgia this year will be higher, prices lower – GUFruit

To date, from Moldova were exported in the marketing season 2019-20. more than 270 thousand tons of apple. At the same time, the season has not yet ended; last year’s apple will be exported from the country in June. In this regard, many operators of the fruit market of the Republic of Moldova indicate that the period of the greatest foreign trade activity has changed dramatically over the past few years: if before, up to 60% of Moldovan apple was exported in the fall and early winter, now so many products are sent abroad in January-May – that is , from refrigerators of agricultural enterprises and traders.

At the same time, about 95-98% of the export flow of apples from Moldova is still directed to the only market – to Russia. In the final marketing year, with all its ups and downs – supply volumes and prices – the Moldovan apple in the Russian market, according to many local experts, sold well. In the spring, in certain periods, the price of the fruits of individual varieties rose to $ 0.68-0.69 / kg, which, according to the most self-critical traders, is “even higher than the price that an apple of such quality would normally have cost.” Whether the similar marketing scenario will repeat in the coming season – when the supply of a quality apple and solvent demand for it is likely to be lower – the question is open.

Andrei Zbanka believes that the price level for Moldovan apples on the Russian market in the new season will “format” the decision of the Russian authorities to increase indicative prices for imported fruits. Apparently, this will lead to higher prices for apples from the Republic of Moldova.

The expert also hopes for a higher sample of Moldovan exporters of duty-free euro quota (for 2020 – 80 thousand tons). In the developing realities, it is possible that an apple from the Republic of Moldova will finally begin to flow to Romania in a larger volume.

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