Californian Walnuts - October Shipping Report
The Californian Walnut Board released their October shipment report on the 11th of November, with less than the desirable although predictable results. Shipments for the month were 73,962 tons, down 28.7% compared to 103,816 tons last year. The lack of shipments was to be expected for several reasons, specifically the ongoing logistical dilemma that we are all beyond tired of hearing. The October numbers give the industry the first glimpse of the new crop shipments after the strong September numbers were skewed as most of the tonnage shipped a month ago was from the 2020 crop. Inshell shipments were down 46.6% and kernel shipments were down 13.6%. Total shipments YTD are 107,750 tons, down 18.8% form 132,819 tons last year.
The lack of shipments was seen across all major markets on both shelled and kernels. Key regional figures were:
- Domestic (USA) – Down 32.1% on inshell and down 11.1% on Kernels
- Europe – Down 23.2% on inshell and down 10.8% on kernels
- Middle East – Down 62% on inshell and down 48.1% on kernels
- Asia – Down 75.6 on inshell and down 19.9% on kernels
As noted above, every singe market was down, due to being behind on shipments and the price just not being right. The domestic market was off likely from plenty of stock remaining from 2020 crop, Europe was hesitant to purchase for reasons mentioned above as shipments were delayed/missed. The middle East has been non-existent as they cover with much cheaper product from China and other sources, and Asia seems to be more of a combination of everything. Japan was he only consistent market, being up 187%. Korea has been scarce as their inventories are reportedly plentiful. Not to mention India, who after a hot start last year has yet to step into the market as they have plenty of stock from Chile and not adept to the new prices from California versus the business they did a year ago.
Total crop receipts YTD now sitting at 564,714 tons. This is compared to 686,026 tons at this stage last year when the final crop was 785,000 tons. Taking into account the NASS estimate of 670,000 tons for the 2021 crop, the receipt to date seems reasonably on track, but we have been surprised in the past and will be cautious with any predictions until we get at least another month of receipt under our belt.