South African Vine Fruit Update

Date: 10th February 2021 Category: Latest News
South African Vine Fruit Update

Following on from our earlier post last week on SA Fruit...

Orange River Area - Northern Cape

Due to a powerful La Nina system, this region has received rainfall ranging from 80mm to 200mm over the last two months. In the Vaal and Orange Rivers, the level of the dams is more than 100 percent complete and the Orange River is currently flooded.

To cope with the problems raised by the heavy rain, the South African raisin industry had to be more innovative. To ensure high quality, there has been a more extensive variety of fruit to be harvested and additional attention has been given to canopy management. The crop will be 15-20 % smaller than 2020 amounts, despite all efforts.

The unusual weather along the Orange River has had an effect on Golden Sultanas development. As a result of the rain damage, the sultana grape variety was dried as SA sultanas. In 2020, the Golden Sultana crop is expected to be between 10 000 and 15 000 t, compared to 25 000 t.

For the Orange River, the overall crop forecast is 55,000-60,000 metric tons versus 75,000 metric tons in 2020.


Drying on racks

The drying of Thompsons on racks is one of the more recent inventions. The Thompsons are dried on special racks that are therefore manufactured and no longer on concrete slabs above the ground.

One of the great benefits of this modern movement is that it eliminates the presence of stones.


River region of Olifants - Western Cape

The valley of the Olifants River, in the Western Cape, this season has experienced excellent growing conditions. As the main production area for currants in South Africa, the outlook for 2021 looks good and the crop is projected to be 4,000-5,000 tonnes. There was a later crop than normal.

The overall crop estimate for this region is 10,000 to 12,000 metric tons, so the total production of vine fruit in SA is expected to be between 67,000 to 75,000 tons.