Dried apricots, Market Update 03.08.2023
The apricot market is firm and prices are increasing at Malatya. This is due to a number of factors, including the earthquake disaster, frost damage, heavy rains, and hail that have affected the crop. As a result, the raw material prices have increased by 70% since January 2023. The availability of the raw material is extremely tight, as farmers are holding onto their goods due to the shortage of new crop apricots for the upcoming season. We do not expect the market to become any easier in the coming weeks.
The US dollar currency has stabilized at 27 TL levels. This was expected by the market, as the currency had been artificially low for almost a year. The correction on the currency side is just balancing the market, and we expect it to reach 28-30 TL levels, which are considered to be the "normal" value compared to the inflation rate in Turkey. The movement of the US dollar currency will be an important parameter for the market from now on.
Turkey's total export quantity of apricots has been realized as 80.545 mt as of today, which is similar to last year's figures. The demand from importers has been balanced, despite the higher prices than last year.
The harvest has started at Malatya under suitable conditions. The first new crop goods are coming into the market in smaller quantities. However, the supply of the raw material is very slow out of new crop comparing past seasons.
The crop estimation committee of Malatya Chamber of Commerce has completed their report for the new crop. The Agricultural Ministry announced the official quantity of crop 2023 apricots to be 77.170 mtons for Malatya. There is no official announcement for the neighbour cities, but we are estimating it to be between 8,000-10,000 mtons for the upcoming crop. In addition to this announcement, the overall quality of crop 2023 fruits is expected to be lower than usual years depending on the spotted and damaged goods by the heavy rains and hails at the area. We are expecting the carry over from current crop to be around 10,000 mtons to the new season.
We are expecting a serious availability problem on smaller size fruits during the new season depending on the small crop at Malatya again. Type 6,7 and 8's will be extremely limited during the season. The majority of the crop will be Type 2,3 and 4 apricots this season. The overall quality of crop 2023 apricots will be lower than usual years, therefore we are expecting the availability of Industrial apricots and Diced Apricots will be slightly better than small size fruits. On the other hand, the SO2 level of new crop apricots is expected to be pretty high, as the farmers will use more sulphure to protect their stocks longer at this kind of short crop year.
In conclusion, we are not expecting an easier market for apricots anymore. The availability of the product will be very tight depending on the limited stocks left for current crop and small crop quantity for the new season. The market will determine its direction depending on the weather conditions during the harvest, availability of the raw material, currency movement, the conditions of the goods coming from the mountain regions, the demand from customers, etc. We suggest our customers to cover up their needs on time for current and new crop as the availability of the product is going to be a major issue for the coming months.