Apricot, Market Report, 21.03.2023
The apricot market is opening these days after the devastating earthquakes slowly with 7,8 and 7,5 magnitutes on 6th of February at Southern part of the country. 10 big cities of Turkey including Malatya have been damaged heavily... Over 10.000 buildings collapsed at the region. The roads, hospitals, airports, factories, facilities, etc. are all damaged. 50.000 people lost their lifes at this terrifying disaster.
The raw material is not very much available as the farmers are not able to collect and bring their goods to the market. The raw material prices increased circa %10 comparing the market levels before the disaster for the limited goods in farmers stocks… There is no damage report published at the villages right now so we don’t know the impact of the earthquake to the remaining stocks out of crop 2022 goods presently. The people left Malatya depending on the ongoing quake risk therefore the trade is extremely slow and there is no proper base for the market presently.
Most of the factories at Malatya are seriously damaged and it will take a long time to recover and return back to production for these companies. The earthquakes are continuously going on therefore the people are leaving the area and passing to neighbor cities which creates a worker problem as well. It will take a few months to collect the workers at the factories and start production of the apricots in Malatya. As we already have a facility in Izmir as well, we will be able to continue our apricot operations smoothly so we are separating from the actual difficulties of the market in a positive way.
The official new crop quantity announcement has been made by Agricultural ministry as 85.610 mtons for 2022/2023 season. Turkey has exported 56.893 mt so far, which was 60.377 mt during the same period of last year. The total exported quantity has been decreased comparing last year’s figures depending on the higher pricing at the starting stage of the season. It’s not exactly known how much goods left in the market after the earthquake damage at the villages… Farmers houses and warehouses have been collapsed which will definitely has a negative effect on the remaining quantity of crop 2022 goods… In this respect, it is impossible to estimate the remaining goods for the rest of the season which may cause further increases on raw material prices in the coming weeks.
Type 1 apricots are not available in the market where Type 2’s are also extremely limited right now. The availability issues will continue for the large size fruits in the coming weeks. The US$ currency is staying stabile at 18,90 TL levels for a long time. The stabile currency while the raw material prices are rising does not support the market positively at the moment. The movement of US$ currency will be an important parameter for the market in the coming weeks.
The bloom period for crop 2023 apricots will take place at Malatya during March – April 2023 period as usual. The weather conditions during the subject period will determine new crop’s quantity, quality and availability situation. If there is hail, heavy rain, frost issues during the bloom period, it will be a 4th year in a row with small crops and the prices will be effected negatively for sure. Turkey has had 3 small crop years in a row for apricots by having %50 shortages since 2019. We would like to think positively so a good bloom period without any serious damage would be a deep breathe for the industry and the market may be relaxed a bit... Another issue is the farmers possibilities to take care of their gardens after the earthquake disaster. The availability of fertilizer, pesticides, labor force,etc... for the harvest period in June 2023 is a big question mark on top of the market right now.
In conclusion, we are expecting a firm market for apricots from now on. The impact of the earthquakes will be pretty big to the apricot industry for both current and new crop. The availability of the product will be very tight till the end of the season therefore we are expecting the prices to go up in the coming weeks. The market will determine its direction depending on the developments during the bloom period for crop 2023 goods as well as the recovery speed of the area after the quakes… We suggest our customers to cover up their needs at any possibility as we are expecting a firm market situation for the near future accordingly.