Good Prospects for EU-27 Apple and Pear Production

An Expert's View about Agriculture and Animal Husbandry in France

Posted on: 27 Nov 2011

Favorable weather conditions in major producing EU member states during the growing season will lead to an 8 percent increase in the production of apples and a 12 percent increase in pears in marketing year (MY) 2011/12.

THIS REPORT CONTAINS ASSESSMENTS OF COMMODITY AND TRADE ISSUES MADE BY USDA STAFF AND NOT NECESSARILY STATEMENTS OF OFFICIAL U.S. GOVERNMENT POLICY Required Report - public distribution Date: 10/31/2011 GAIN Report Number: E60062 EU-27 Fresh Deciduous Fruit Annual Good Prospects for EU-27 Apple and Pear Production Approved By: Paul Spencer Prepared By: Roswitha Krautgartner, Sabine Lieberz, Marcel Pinckaers, Ferenc Nemes, Stefano Baldi, Tania DeBelder, and the group of FAS fruit specialists in the EU Report Highlights: Favorable weather conditions in major producing EU member states during the growing season will lead to an 8 percent increase in the production of apples and a 12 percent increase in pears in marketing year (MY) 2011/12. Total MY 2011/12 EU-27 apple production is estimated at 11.8 million metric tons (MMT) and pear production at 120,000 MT. Table grape production is expected increase 1 percent to 1.9 MMT. The production of concentrated apple juice is forecast to increase by 25 percent. Executive Summary: Introduction Disclaimer: This report presents the situation and outlook for apples, pears, concentrated apples juice (CAJ), and table grapes in the EU-27. This report presents the views of the authors and does not reflect the official views of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). The data are not official USDA data. This report was a group effort of the following FAS analysts: Xavier Audran FAS/Paris covering France Stefano Baldi FAS/Rome covering Italy Ornella Bettini FAS/Rome covering Greece Mila Boshnakova FAS/Sofia covering Bulgaria Bettina Dahlbacka FAS/Stockholm covering Denmark, Finland, and Sweden Tania DeBelder USEU/FAS Brussels covering EU policy Monica Dobrescu FAS/Bucharest covering Romania Agata Kingsbury FAS/Warsaw covering Poland Roswitha Krautgartner FAS/Vienna covering Austria and Slovenia Sabine Lieberz FAS/Berlin covering Germany Arantxa Medina FAS/Madrid covering Spain and Portugal Jana Mikulasova FAS/Prague covering the Czech Republic and Slovakia Ferenc Nemes FAS/Budapest covering Hungary Marcel Pinckaers FAS/The Hague covering Belgium, Luxemburg and the Netherlands Jennifer Wilson FAS/London covering the U.K. and Ireland The chapters were coordinated by: Overall coordination and executive summary Roswitha Krautgartner (Email: krautgartnerrx@state.gov) Apples Sabine Lieberz (Email: lieberzs@state.gov) Pears Marcel Pinckaers (Email: pinckaersm@state.gov) Concentrated Apple Juice Ferenc Nemes (Email: nemesf@state.gov) Table Grapes Stefano Baldi (Email: baldis@state.gov) Policy Tania DeBelder (Email: debeldert@state.gov) Abbreviations and definitions used in this report CAJ Concentrated Apple Juice CMO Common Market Organization EU European Union GTA Global Trade Atlas Ha Hectare; 1 ha = 2.471 Acres MT Metric Ton = 1000 kg MMT Million Metric Tons MS EU Member State(s) MY Marketing year Apples: July/June Pears: July/June CAJ: July/June Table Grapes: June/May NMS New EU Member States Bulgaria, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia NR Non reconstituted juices Operational Program United Arab Emirates USD U.S. Dollar WAPA World Apple and Pear Association Trade data cited in this report was derived by using the following HS tariff codes: Apples: 0808 10 Pears: 0808 20 CAJ: 2009 79 Table grapes: 0806 10 10 Table of Contents Executive Summary Apples Pears Concentrated Apple Juice Table Grapes Policy Trade Fairs Related Reports Executive Summary Coordinated by Roswitha Krautgartner/FAS Vienna Production The EU-27 is a world leader in fresh deciduous fruit production. Favorable weather conditions in major producing EU member states during the growing season will lead to an 8 percent increase in the production of apples and a 12 percent increase in pears in marketing year (MY) 2011/12. The increased apple production, including non-commercial production, of about 11.8 MMT is largely due to an increase in Polish production, and increases in the Netherlands, Germany, France, Spain, Italy, and Austria. In contrast, Hungary suffered from severe frost damage and reported 35 percent lower production. The major pear producing countries, Italy, Spain, and the Netherlands, expect higher production in MY 2011/12. Only Belgium reports pear production similar to last year, in part due to hail and storm damage. Overall EU-27 pear production is expected to reach about 120,000 MT. Total table grapes production is expected to slightly increase by 1 percent and will reach about 1.9 MMT. After a 12 percent decline in concentrated apple juice (CAJ) production in MY 2010/11, CAJ production in MY 2011/12 is forecast to increase by about 25 percent to 522,000 MT. This is mainly the result of a rebound in German production. Consumption and Trade Apples are the most popular fruit in the EU-27, followed by bananas, citrus, and pears. Due to higher availability, a slight increase in consumption of both apples and pears is expected in MY 2011/12. Due to higher expected exports from Poland, France, Italy, and the Netherlands, total apple exports in MY 2011/12 will rebound. Top destinations for EU-27 apples are Russia, Ukraine, and Algeria. The good availability of locally produced pears is expected to lead to somewhat lower imports and just a 2 percent increase in exports. Leading export markets for EU-27 pears are Russia, Brazil, and Norway. Total EU-27 table grape consumption has been rather stable in recent years. Consumption of concentrated apple juice is trending down because of growing competition from other soft drinks, such as ready-to-drink teas, functional drinks and energy drinks. Policy In June 2010, Russia issued a law amending its maximum levels for pesticide residues (MRLs) as some of the Russian MRLs were excessively strict. The new law provides more favorable conditions for EU exporters of vegetables and fruits. The European school fruit scheme (SFS), which was introduced to reverse declining consumption trends for fruits and vegetables, has entered its third year. After this year the system will be reviewed. The main beneficiaries in 2011/12 are France, Italy, Germany, Romania, and Poland. Apples Coordinated by Sabine Lieberz/FAS Berlin Table 1: EU-27 PSD for Fresh Apples (in ha, trees, MT) Apples, Fresh EU-27 2009/2010 2010/2011 2011/2012 Market Year Begin: Jul 2009 Market Year Begin: Jul 2010 Market Year Begin: Jul 2011 USDA Official New Post USDA Official New Post USDA Official New Post Area Planted 534,145 523,140 528,930 516,730 511,400 Area Harvested 500,017 485,550 495,390 480,630 477,200 Bearing Trees 0 0 Non-Bearing Trees 0 0 Total Trees 0 0 0 0 0 Commercial Production 11,105,636 10,932,871 9,455,000 9,691,071 10,472,000 Non-Comm. Production 1,104,880 1,088,417 1,229,800 1,197,893 1,362,000 Production 12,210,516 12,021,288 10,684,800 10,888,964 11,834,000 Imports 593,693 595,944 710,000 614,173 635,000 Total Supply 12,804,209 12,617,232 11,394,800 11,503,137 12,469,000 Fresh Dom. 8,197,755 8,071,054 7,467,800 7,663,036 7,829,700 Consumption Exports 1,216,934 1,217,352 1,200,000 1,090,306 1,527,600 For Processing 3,389,520 3,328,826 2,727,000 2,749,795 3,111,700 Withdrawal From 0 0 Market Total Distribution 12,804,209 12,617,232 11,394,800 11,503,137 12,469,000 HA, 1000 TREES, MT Note: Data for tree numbers is only available for few member states; therefore lines referring to tree numbers are left blank. Source: FAS EU-27 Apples ? Production Apples - Commercial Production The EU-27 is one of the leading producers and consumers of apples in the world. Poland, Italy, France, Germany, and Spain are the top five producing member states (MS) and together account for 77 percent of the total EU commercial apple production. Some 25 varieties are produced commercially in the EU in volumes exceeding 10,000 MT. Among these, Golden Delicious, Gala, and Jonagold are the dominant varieties. However, production patterns vary. While Golden Delicious is the variety with the largest production in Italy, France, and Spain, Elstar is dominant in Germany and the Netherlands; Idared and Jonathan are the number one varieties in Poland and Hungary, respectively. However, new varieties, for example Pink Lady, Kanzi, Rubens, Tentation, have increased their share of production in recent years. In the Netherlands ?new? varieties comprise 10 percent of total production. Commercial apple production in MY 2011/12 is estimated at 10.5 MMT. However, this estimate is still provisional since the harvest is still ongoing in some of the major production regions. This estimate is 2.5 percent more than what was projected in August by WAPA and 8 percent higher production compared to MY 2010/11. The increase compared to the previous MY is largely due to a 34 percent increase in the Polish production, and increases in the Netherlands, Germany, France, Spain, Italy, and Austria, who all benefitted from good growing conditions with little or no frosts and sufficient water supply. In contrast, Hungary suffered from severe frost damage and reported a 35 percent or 100,000 lower production. Substantial hail damage was reported in Belgium and Italy. The increase compared to the August WAPA estimate is a result of larger fruit size. Harvest began one to three weeks earlier than in the long-term average. Table 2: EU-27 Commercial Apple Production by Country and Year in MT COUNTRY 2009 2010 2011e Change Percent 2011:2010 of Total in Percent Production Poland 2,593,000 1,850,000 2,470,000 34% 24% Italy 2,237,278 2,179,615 2,221,000 2% 21% France 1,730,000 1,693,000 1,752,000 3% 17% Germany 1,071,000 835,000 896,000 7% 9% Spain 601,800 636,100 684,700 8% 7% the Netherlands 381,900 330,000 405,000 23% 4% Romania 379,284 411,000 395,000 -4% 4% Belgium 333,000 279,000 273,500 -2% 3% Greece 224,000 254,000 245,000 -4% 2% Austria 223,947 197,413 220,000 11% 2% United Kingdom 212,000 214,000 219,000 2% 2% Hungary 324,000 295,000 193,000 -35% 2% Portugal 196,116 164,731 170,000 3% 2% Slovenia 72,587 65,000 73,000 12% 0,7% Czech Republic 144,993 103,000 66,000 -36% 0,6% Lithuania 74,000 46,000 60,000 30% 0,6% Slovak Republic 37,698 32,215 32,800 2% 0,3% Bulgaria 21,000 29,235 29,000 -1% 0,3% Denmark 21,000 21,000 21,000 0% 0,2% Sweden 21,000 23,500 18,000 -23% 0,2% Ireland 16,000 16,000 16,000 0% 0,2% Latvia 13,000 12,000 8,000 -33% 0,1% Finland 4,268 4,262 4,000 -6% 0,0% TOTAL EU-27 10,932,871 9,691,071 10,472,000 8% 100% e= estimated Source: FAS/EU-27 Chart 1: Commercial Apple Production in the EU-27 by Variety and Year in 1,000 MT Note: Category ?Other? includes but is not limited to: Annurca, Ariane, Belgica, Boskoop, Bramley, Cameo, Cortland, Cox Orange, Cripps Pink, Diwa, Glockenapfel, Gloster, Gravensteiner, Greenstar, Honey crunch, Ingrid Marie, James Grieve, Jazz, Junami, Kanzi, Lobo, Mariac, Morgenduft, Pinova, Reinette Grise du Canada, Rubens, Tentation, Topaz, Wellant Source: FAS/EU-27, based on data from WAPA Apples - Non-Commercial Production Non-commercial production in MY 2011/12 is estimated at 1.4 MMT, which is 14 percent higher than in MY 2010/11. This is largely a result of a substantial rebound in production in Germany (an increase of 50 percent compared to MY 2010/11) that is only partially offset by a decline in Hungary (a decrease of 45 percent). However, most EU member states do not report estimates for non-commercial production (e.g., private gardens or meadows). As a result, the production figure provided in table 1 is a very rough estimate which is based on industry rather than official information. Non-commercial production tends to alternate between good and poor crop years (For background please refer to page 7 of E48163). Typically, non-commercial production is used for fresh consumption, apple juice and spirits production, baking (cakes, tarts) or preserved foods (canned, dried, and cooked). The amount of apples diverted to the different segments varies depending on the price for processing apples. Higher processing apple prices generally result in a higher proportion of fruit entering juice production. In general, non-commercial production is gradually decreasing in the EU-27 as hobby farmers get older. Younger generations have simply not shown the same interest in small-scale production. Instead, commercial production of higher acid apple varieties for processing is expected to increase to meet demand from the CAJ industry. Apples - Stocks According to WAPA, EU stocks of apples amounted to 210,217 MT on July 1, 2011, compared to 287,958 MT at the same time in 2010. Reporting of stocks varies by MS. In some MS the stock number comprised apples stored at producer organizations (POs), in some MS stocks are at POs and wholesalers. More important than the actual number is the year-on-year-change of stocks, as end of MY stocks can have a detrimental effect on the prices for the new harvest. In this report, stocks are included in the ?fresh domestic consumption? line of the PSD. Apples ? Consumption Consumer Preferences Apples are the most popular fruit in all MS, followed by bananas and citrus. Spain is the only exception to this. Spanish consumers put apples second, behind oranges. However, a closer look within the apple segment shows differences in consumer preferences between MS. For information on variety and size preferences by MS please refer to page 9 of E48163. In Hungary, consumption of fresh table apples is slowly decreasing. Annual per-capita- consumption decreased by more than 4 kilogram during the last five years. The reduction is partly attributed to increased fruit sales at hypermarkets, where good availability and price competition from other kinds of fruit offer consumers attractive alternatives. The movement to buy local and in season produce has gained traction in some MS such as the UK, Belgium, the Netherlands, and Austria and to some extent in Germany and France. To the British, apples are an iconic local produce that conjure up nostalgia for traditional harvests and days gone by. In the UK, the strong demand for local produce has resulted in an increase in the share of domestically produced apples in recent years, from 25 percent in 2003 to 40 percent in 2010. Potentially, the UK could increase domestic production to 50 percent of consumption. The market is also responding to policy drivers on food security, climate change, and health. Discussions about a product?s ?carbon footprint? are prompting Dutch and Belgian consumers to choose local over imported product. In Germany, this movement is associated with consumers who buy at farmers markets. They tend to prefer local produce over products from other countries and even over products from other regions in Germany. Processing In MY 2011/12, processing use of apples is expected to increase compared to MY 2010/11 because of higher non-commercial apple production (especially in Germany, Austria, Slovenia, and Poland), low quality of apples in the Czech Republic due to extensive frost damage, and substantial hail damage in most regions of Europe. Processing uses for apples include, among others apple juice, concentrated apple juice (CAJ), cider, wine/brandy, apple sauce, preserves, canning, apple chips, and peeled apples for bakeries. The share of apples used for processing varies significantly from MS to MS; ranging from 2 percent in France to well over 60 percent in Hungary. The processing share also varies from year to year. The EU-27 average share of apples going into processing is forecast to amount to about 23 percent of total supply in MY 2010/11. Major MS with apple processing include Poland, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Romania, Spain, the Netherlands, and the U.K. (in order of descending volumes). Apples ? Trade The majority of trade occurs within the EU-27 countries. Over the past five years, an average about 2.2 million MT of apples were traded between EU member states, while roughly 800,000 MT were imported from outside the EU-27. In recent years, imports contributed to between 5 and 8 percent of the total apple supply on the EU market. EU-27 External Trade Imports The increase of imports in MY 2010/11 is a result of higher table apple imports from the Southern Hemisphere and higher must apple imports from Serbia and Croatia. For MY 2011/12 EU imports are forecast to increase moderately. Almost 90 percent of EU-27 apple imports originate from the top five suppliers, all of which are located in the southern hemisphere and export mostly during the European off-season. The main importers of apples are the Netherlands and the U.K., who together account for more than half of the EU-27 imports. However, much of the volume entering the Netherlands will not be consumed there but eventually be transshipped to other MS. Increased imports of processing apples, mainly from Croatia, Serbia, Macedonia, and Moldova, and partly a result of high EU prices for processing apples. In addition, Serbia and Croatia enjoy a preferential, zero duty tariff rate quota for exported industrial apples to Hungary between September?December. U.S. apple exports to the EU-27 occur year-round; however, most arrive between November and April. U.S. apples compete with domestic production and with competitively priced imports from China. For example, the average import price for U.S. apples in MY 2010/11 was 1,516 USD per MT, while Chinese apples were imported at 1,302 USD per MT (source: GTA). The main importers of U.S. apples in MY 2010/11 were the U.K., Finland, Sweden, the Netherlands, and Ireland. EU imports of U.S. apples decreased by 49 percent compared to MY 2009/10 mainly due to the enforcement of EU food additive legislation. Morpholine, a carrier for glazing agents applied to fruit, is approved for use in third countries such as Chile, the USA and Canada, but not in the EU. The U.S. industry has now taken steps to ensure that fruit destined for the EU does not have any trace of morpholine. Table 3: EU-27 Imports of Apples in MT Country of Origin MY 2008/09 MY 2009/10 MY 2010/11 Change Chile 214,843 161,961 177,900 10% New Zealand 163,066 126,958 144,481 14% South Africa 170,193 121,588 120,348 -1% Argentina 63,149 46,425 52,186 12% Brazil 92,626 71,486 42,203 -41% Macedonia 14,885 13,920 17,961 29% Croatia 2,524 6,008 13,783 129% Serbia 218 2,198 12,059 449% United States 26,854 23,643 11,998 -49% China 24,724 14,137 5,644 -60% Moldova 210 1,972 5,141 161% Uruguay 2,369 1,918 4,729 147% Canada 1,212 1,387 1,221 -12% Switzerland 680 731 1,157 58% Bosnia & Herzegovina 0 298 972 226% Ukraine 756 735 729 -1% Other 1,809 579 1,661 187% World Total 780,118 595,944 614,173 3% Thereof processing apples 7,925 9,743 40,119 312% Source: Global Trade Atlas (GTA) Exports GTA data suggests that the decrease in total EU-27 apple exports in MY 2010/11 was largely a result of decreased exports from Poland to the Ukraine and Russia, which were not compensated by larger exports from Spain and Italy to the Ukraine and Italy and Belgium to Russia. The largest increases in exports were achieved to Egypt (from Italy, and to a lesser extent from Greece), Turkey (from Greece), and Iran (from France and Italy). For MY 2011/12 exports are expected to rebound with Poland, France, Italy, and the Netherlands increasing sales. French exports are expected to continue to grow significantly, with exports to Algeria, Russia, Saudi Arabia, UAE and Malaysia becoming significant importers of French apples. Italian exports are forecast to increase towards new areas such as North Africa (Egypt, Algeria and Libya) and Mid- East countries (UAE, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Iran, Lebanon). In addition, Polish and German industry sources expect steep increases in Polish exports, is due to better quality and substantially higher export volumes out of Poland compared to last year. The top destinations for EU-27 apples are Russia, Ukraine, and Algeria. The largest EU exporters are Poland (mostly to Russia and Ukraine), France (mainly to Algeria, Russia, UAE, and Saudi Arabia), and Italy (to Russia, Libya, Norway, and Saudi Arabia). In some large foreign markets, EU and U.S. suppliers compete; including: Russia: Poland, Italy, Belgium, France, and Germany UAE: France, Italy Saudi Arabia: Italy, France Table 4: EU-27 Exports of Apples in MT Country of Destination MY 2007/08 MY 2008/09 MY 2009/10 Change Russia 587,704 524,633 500,829 -5% Algeria 75,614 88,949 92,327 4% Ukraine 258,974 255,735 84,636 -67% Belarus 43,802 41,064 44,953 9% Saudi Arabia 19,922 34,713 36,669 6% Libya 23,881 34,358 35,526 3% Norway 32,663 35,068 33,329 -5% United Arab Emirates 14,344 24,995 27,026 8% Kazakhstan 12,754 30,918 23,605 -24% Turkey 5,833 5,967 22,509 277% Egypt 1,214 2,862 21,286 644% Albania 11,920 15,149 12,343 -19% Morocco 8,207 12,727 10,775 -15% Melilla 9,803 10,227 10,283 1% Iran 2,910 2,747 10,242 273% Other 92,975 97,240 123,968 27% World Total 1,202,520 1,217,352 1,090,306 -10% Source: Global Trade Atlas (GTA) Apples ? Withdrawal from Market The reform of the EU common market organization for fruits and vegetables (see policy section) also brought about a change in the intervention system (also called ?withdrawal from market?). Previously, a producer organization was allowed to dispose up to 8.5 percent of its marketed volume of apples through intervention programs. However, unlike other commodities, these volumes were not allowed to re-enter the market at a later stage. Instead, they had to be permanently ?withdrawn from the market?, for example by donation to charity or be destroyed. Since 2008, ?withdrawal from market? is no longer available as a separate measure but has to be included as an emergency measure in the producer organizations? operational program (OP). This means, the system moved from being financed entirely by EU funds to a co- financing system where producer organizations have to bear 50 percent of the costs. As a consequence, from MY 2008/09, MS authorities began administering ?withdrawals from market? indirectly via approval of the OP. Thus, volume data is no longer available. Also, some member states (for example Germany) have opted to do away with intervention for fruits and vegetables altogether. Apples ? Additional Information For information on tariffs, maximum residue levels, and labeling requirements please see the respective sections at the end of the report. Pears, Fresh Coordinated by Marcel Pinckaers/FAS The Hague Table 5: EU-27 PSD for fresh pears (in ha, trees, MT) Pears, Fresh EU-27 2009/2010 2010/2011 2011/2012 Market Year Begin: Jul 2009 Market Year Begin: Jul 2010 Market Year Begin: Jul 2011 USDA Official New Post USDA Official New Post USDA Official New Post Area Planted 135,930 133,506 136,241 135,373 135,765 Area Harvested 127,630 124,926 127,881 126,631 127,134 Bearing Trees Non-Bearing Trees Total Trees Commercial Production 2,605,200 2,596,336 2,185,000 2,283,068 2,555,930 Non-Comm. Production 148,460 155,445 119,700 112,832 120,400 Production 2,753,660 2,751,781 2,304,700 2,395,900 2,676,330 Imports 279,306 279,082 325,000 315,428 301,150 Total Supply 3,032,966 3,030,863 2,629,700 2,711,328 2,977,480 Fresh Dom. 2,396,148 2,400,000 2,165,567 2,204,000 2,360,286 Consumption Exports 311,758 313,527 300,000 347,106 354,774 For Processing 325,060 317,336 164,133 160,222 262,420 Withdrawal From Market 0 0 0 0 0 Total Distribution 3,032,966 3,030,863 2,629,700 2,711,328 2,977,480 HA, 1000 TREES, MT Note: Data for tree numbers is only available for a few MS; therefore lines referring to tree numbers are left blank. Source: FAS/EU-27 Pears ? Production Pears ? Commercial Production After China, the EU-27 is the world?s largest producer of pears, followed by the United States and Argentina. Italy, Spain, the Netherlands and Belgium are the top four producing member states (MS) and together account for over three-quarter of total EU-27 commercial pear th th production. France and Portugal are the EU?s 5 and 6 largest pear producing countries, respectively. The most produced pear variety continues to be Conference, mainly grown in Belgium, the Netherlands, Spain and Italy. Other popular varieties include Abate Fetel (grown in Italy), William Bon Chrétien (grown in Italy, France and Spain) and Rocha (grown in Portugal). Chart 2: EU-27 Pear Production for Selected Varieties in 1,000 MT Source: WAPA Commercial pear production in MY 2011/12 is estimated at 2.6 MMT, up by 12 percent compared to MY 2010/11 but lower than MY 2009/10. This year?s production is largely the result of higher production in Italy and to a lesser extent in the Netherlands and Spain. Italy is the EU?s largest pear producer, responsible for roughly a third of total production, with production concentrated in the North East region. Due to a rather stable area, Italy?s increased production is attributed to excellent yields due to favorable weather conditions. As a result, however, the size of the pears is expected to be somewhat smaller than last year. Pear production in Spain is also expected to be up by 5 percent due to overall good weather conditions in the leading pear production areas Catalonia and Aragon. The quality of the main varieties, Conference, Blanquilla, Williams and Limonera, is expected to be good. Pear production in the Netherlands is estimated to be near record, at 301,000 MT, mainly due to the warm spring and early blossoming. Belgium similarly expectation a good crop until August 18, 2011, when bad weather and hail damaged hundreds of hectares in the main production regions of Brabant and Limburg. Pear production in Belgium is expected to be similar to last year. France and Portugal are both expected to increase production and to have a better than average quality. Table 6: EU-27 Commercial Pear Production by Country and Year Change 2011 against Percent of MY MY MY MY 2010 in Total 2008/09 2009/10 2010/11 2011/12 Percent Production Italy 770,123 871,225 680,000 886,000 30% 34.7% Spain 538,700 434,200 454,000 475,600 5% 18.6% the Netherlands 163,400 285,950 258,990 301,000 16% 11.8% Belgium 161,500 291,650 276,500 279,500 1% 10.9% France 160,000 188,000 173,000 181,000 5% 7.1% Portugal 195,090 249,109 176,870 180,000 2% 7.0% Poland 65,500 75,000 56,000 60,000 7% 2.3% Germany 38,000 52,000 38,895 48,000 23% 1.9% Greece 51,000 43,000 54,000 47,000 -13% 1.8% United Kingdom 29,000 30,000 33,000 26,000 -21% 1.0% Romania 19,725 24,000 20,000 24,000 20% 0.9% Hungary 22,000 30,000 21,000 21,000 0% 0.9% Other 23,384 31,064 40,813 26,830 -37% 1.1% Total Production 2,237,422 2,605,198 2,283,068 2,555,930 12% 100% Source: FAS/EU-27 Pears ? Non-Commercial Production Non-commercial production in MY 2011/12 is estimated at 120,400 MT. Similar to the situation for apples, the non-commercial production of pears includes gardens and meadows and is mainly used for fresh consumption or further processing for domestic use. Non-commercial production figures for pears are especially large in Austria, Czech Republic, Romania and Slovakia compared to total production figures. For the EU as a whole, non-commercial production represents about 4.5 percent of total pear production but is overall gradually decreasing in the European Union, as hobby farmers get older and the younger generations do not show the same level of interest. Pears ? Consumption Pears are popular throughout the EU although apples, oranges and bananas continue to lead fresh fruit consumption. The per capita consumption of pears is high in those countries that have a large pear production like Italy, Spain, the Netherlands, Belgium, Portugal and France. The Nordic (except for Denmark) and Central and Eastern European countries have, in general, a lower per capita consumption of pears. On the MS level, the most popular pear varieties are those that are locally or regionally grown. The Conference pear variety and to a lesser extent the Doyenne du Comice variety still dominate pear consumption in for instance North West Europe, while Williams Bon Crétien and Abate Fetel are popular pears in Spain and Italy. The varieties that keep well, e.g. Conference, are normally speaking year round available. Other varieties, like Doyenne du Comice, are available after harvesting and complemented by imports of Bon Chrétien Williams and Packham from Southern Hemisphere countries later in the marketing year. Health, variety and convenience have become important deciding factors for consumers when buying products. Pears are increasingly used in salads, cooking and snacks consumption. The industry tries to benefit from this trend through product innovation. Pears - Processing In MY 2011/12 it is expected that the volume of pears that will be used for processing will be around 260,000 MT mainly due to high volumes for processing in Italy. Pears ? Trade The majority of the pear trade occurs within the EU-27. Over the past 5 years, roughly 800,000 MT of pears were imported from other MS, while on average 330,000 MT were imported from third countries, accounting for 30 percent of the total pear supply on the EU-27 market. EU-27 External Trade Imports For MY 2011/12, imports are expected to be somewhat lower compared to MY 2010/11. It is expected that there will be sufficient locally produced pears available, although EU-27 pear imports contain different varieties and therefore serve, to a certain extent, different market segments. The main EU-27 importing countries continue to be the Netherlands and Italy, together responsible for two-third of EU-27 pear imports. Much of the volume entering the Netherlands and Belgium will ultimately be shipped to other MS. Table 7: EU-27 Imports of Pears in MT Country of Origin: MY 2007/08 MY 2008/09 MY 2009/10 MY 2010/11 Argentina 156,765 164,349 107,036 138,654 South Africa 103,540 128,302 100,067 108,305 Chile 54,604 60,717 43,490 45,222 China 21,870 20,869 15,494 11,580 Turkey 4,711 8,658 5,050 5,081 Unites States 4,957 6,306 3,458 2,782 Uruguay 1,425 1,273 1,575 1,332 New Zealand 2,167 2,079 1,627 1,255 Other 1,654 1,368 1,285 1,217 World Total 351,693 393,921 279,082 315,428 Source: Global Trade Atlas Around three quarter of the EU-27 pear imports comes from Argentina and South Africa. Chile is the EU?s third largest supplier of pears. Trade with these three countries takes place primarily between February and July and complements the varieties that are available within the EU. The most popular imported varieties include Williams Bon Crétien, Packham and Anjou. Other trade partners include China, Turkey (mainly quinces) and the United States. U.S. pear exports to the EU-27 usually occur between November and February. Industry contacts indicate good market prospects for U.S. pears in January and February. In these months they compete with domestically grown pears. Consumer demand is strong for U.S. Anjou pears and especially in the German market. Price however continues to be the main challenge in this price sensitive market. Exports For MY 2011/12, exports are forecast to increase by 2 percent compared to MY 2010/11 because of the estimated higher availability. The main EU-27 exporting countries continue to be Belgium and the Netherlands, together responsible for almost 60 percent of EU-27 pear exports. Other leading exporters include Spain and Portugal. The leading export market for EU-27 pears is by far Russia, responsible for almost 70 percent of total pear exports. Brazil nd rd and Norway are EU?s respectively 2 and 3 largest markets. Table 8: EU-27 Exports of Pears in MT Country of Origin: MY 2007/08 MY 2008/09 MY 2009/10 MY 2010/11 Russia 198,893 152,575 218,495 238,981 Brazil 10,118 9,802 25,584 29,085 Norway 24,745 21,247 20,849 19,431 Belarus 6,003 3,453 5,034 7,466 Switzerland 4,160 7,836 4,517 6,020 Morocco 1,048 1,956 3,098 5,043 Ukraine 4,450 3,707 2,604 4,298 Melilla 2,675 1,810 2,487 3,311 Other 22,850 21,510 30,859 33,471 World Total 274,942 223,896 313,527 347,106 Source: Global Trade Atlas Russia is increasingly an important market for Belgium (Conference pear) and to a lesser extent the Netherlands, Spain, Poland, France and Portugal. With higher expected pear production in the EU-27 in combination with a growing demand for fresh fruit in Russia, EU-27 exports to Russia for MY 2011/12 are expected to be up by an estimated 1 to 2 percent compared to MY 2010/11. EU-27 exports start directly after harvesting and run until the summer. EU exports face competition as of late February/early March from pears from Southern Hemisphere countries. Although Brazil?s pear imports overall largely depend on Argentina, Portugal is the country?s second largest supplier of pears (Rocha variety). Brazil imports year round; although imports from Argentina seem to slow down as imports from Portugal start, which occurs between September and February. Brazilian consumers prefer varieties like Anjou and Bartlett (Williams). Norway?s pear suppliers are the Netherlands and Belgium (Conference variety). Since the agreement between China and Belgium, see GAIN E50067, exports of Belgian pears to China have gone up from 34 MT in MY 2009/10 to over 300 MT in MY 2010/11. EU-27 exports are expected to continue to grow, albeit at a slower paste, in MY 2011/12 if more regions within the EU become approved to ship to China and since consumption of fresh pears is growing. However it is also important to note that on the Chinese market EU pears (Conference variety) are considered expensive compared to locally produced pears. Pears - Prices Because of the estimated higher availability resulting from increased production this year, prices are under pressure. Pears ? Withdrawal from market The situation is the same as with apples. Please refer to the respective paragraph in the section of this report for detailed information. Pears ? Additional Information For information on tariffs, maximum residue levels, labeling requirements please see the respective sections at the end of the report. Concentrated Apple (CAJ) Juice Coordinated by Ferenc Nemes/FAS Budapest CAJ ? Production The seven largest apple juice concentrate (CAJ) producers of the European Union are Poland, Germany, Italy, Hungary, Spain, Romania, and Austria. They account for nearly all EU production. The forecast for EU-27 CAJ production is 522,000 MT for MY 2011/12, compared to and estimated 403,000 MT in MY 2010/11. Forecasts indicate a reduction of CAJ production in most EU MS in most MY 2011/12 except for Germany, where production is rebounding. Some of the reasons for the continuing decline, namely high production costs and decreasing market demand for CAJ in the EU, remain. However, international CAJ prices have increased rapidly since the fall of 2010 and large stocks impacting the industry earlier have been depleted. A devastating frost in early May 2011, which hit several main producers, especially Poland and Hungary, is another main reason behind this year?s production decline in some MS. Market prospects are good for table apples, and this is why crushing in parts of West Europe is stagnating. In Germany in contrast, CAJ production is expected to increase by 42 percent compared to the very low levels in MY 2010/11, as non-commercial apple production is estimated to be 50 percent higher than in the previous year. Poor crushing apple availability and strong demand for table apples keep prices for industrial apple high. Low carryover stocks of concentrate in Europe this summer and increasing juice prices in China are harbingers of a continuation of high CAJ market prices for MY 2011/12 after prices bottomed out in MY 2009/10. CAJ ? Quality A large portion of the raw material for CAJ production in Europe consists of high acid apples. This is partly because of the climate, as apples grown under cooler temperature develop higher acid content. The variety mix of the New Member States still contains high percentage of old varieties such as Jonathan and Idared. These varieties typically have a more sour taste compared to the ?modern? table apple varieties dominating the variety mix in other countries. Apples, pears, and grapes are close substitutes for multi-fruit and sparkling juices. Apple juice concentrate prices fluctuate with the level of apple juice concentrate imports and the availability of grape juice concentrate in the market. In MY 2011/12, tight apple juice supplies and high prices may drive substitution to grape and pear juice concentrates. Additionally, tough economic times in some MS may turn consumers away from more expensive apple-based juices. During the past several years, the EU food additive directive has given EU producers permission to use natural ingredients (citric acid) in order to achieve the more tart tastes preferred by customers. Another major food quality issue worldwide and in the EU is the question of added sugar in beverages. The European Commission proposed, with strong support from the Environment and Food Safety Committee, to eliminate the option of adding sugar to fruit juice (including concentrates) and nectars. Proposals to the amendment call for the permission to use ?without added sugar? labels on these products for a transition period of five years to educate consumers. In case of nectars, other suggestions want to allow the use of sugar, honey, or sweeteners. In these cases, however, the additives should be listed on the label rather than using the simple word ?sweetened?. CAJ ? Consumption Main user of CAJ is the fruit juice industry in apple or blended soft drinks. Consumption of fruit/vegetable juices decreased in most West European Countries as the market became saturated and competition from other soft drinks grew. The main competitors to fruit based beverages in developed markets are ready-to-drink (RTD) teas, functional drinks, and energy drinks. Some newer MS, however, still see growth due to lower initial per capita consumption levels. According to Euromonitor, fruit and vegetable juice sales in Western Europe decreased by 2.6 percent between 2005 and 2010 but sales in Eastern Europe grew by 17.4 percent during the same period. The preference for apples vs. other fruits depends on the culture and availability. In Germany and Austria the leading flavor for pure juices is still apple. However, in the breakdown of the total category (juices, drinks etc.) orange overtook apple in Germany for the first time in 2009. See the changes of fruit juice consumption preferences in Germany between 2000-2010 at Table 9. The apple flavor is also popular in the juice consumption in the Netherlands (28 percent) and the UK (24.5 percent). Italy and Spain are strong producers and net exporters of CAJ but apple juice was only 5.7 percent and 4 percent of pure fruit juice sales in 2008, according to Euromonitor. Table 9: Annual Per Capita Consumption of Select Juices and Fruit Drinks in Germany (in liter) % 2000 2005 2007 2008 2009 2010pChange Apple Juice 12.20 12.42 11.35 9.25 8.50 8.10 -4.7% Orange Juice 9.53 8.93 8.32 8.00 9.00 8.65 -3.9% Grape Juice 1.32 1.29 1.25 1.00 1.00 1.00 0.0% Grapefruit Juice 0.39 0.36 0.36 0.30 0.30 0.30 0.0% Pear Juice 0.18 0.25 0.26 0.25 0.20 0.20 0.0% Vegetable Juice 0.96 1.35 1.35 1.20 1.20 1.20 0.0% Citrus Nectar 7.75 7.26 7.20 8.00 6.50 6.50 0.0% Other Juice/Nectar 8.31 8.18 8.21 9.40 10.30 10.30 0.0% Total 40.64 40.04 38.30 37.40 37.00 36.25 -2.0% p= preliminary Source: VdF, Association of the German Fruit Juice Industry, Annual Report 2010, page 44. In the premium segment (100 percent juice, nectar) CAJ utilization is reduced by the growth of ?non reconstituted? (NR) juices made of fruit. According to Euromonitor, sales of NR indicated double digit growth rate in the most quality conscious countries (Germany, the Netherlands, UK, Austria) while the consumption of fruit/vegetable juices as a whole declined. Home extraction of fruit juice, bars, and health food vendors offer new consumption ?culture? on the basis of the all year availability of seasonal fruit. According to fruit juice association estimates, about 20 percent of German apple juice production is bottled directly, while 80 percent are further processed into CAJ. CAJ ? Trade Of the EU-27 countries Germany, the Netherlands, Austria, and Poland were the biggest buyers in MY 2010/11 accounting for 33 percent, 29 percent, 17 percent, and 11 percent of the total imports, respectively. In the past, the EU was one of the largest apple juice concentrate importers in the world. In 2008 and 2009, the EU?s third country imports of CAJ decreased considerably and the United States is now the biggest single import market. Chart 3: EU-27 Concentrated Apple Juice Imports by Country Source: FAS Budapest based on GTA data China remained the dominant source of EU-27 CAJ imports in MY 2010/2011. However, China?s sales to the EU dropped in MY 2009/10 to 25 percent of their peak in MY 2006/07. Alternative CAJ import sources for the EU have emerged in the last two years. Sales from Turkey, Serbia, and Brazil increased in MY 2009/10 and MY2010/11. The Ukraine, and Moldova could stabilize their position among the five biggest suppliers to the shrinking EU market. Switzerland lost its major supplier position in the last marketing year due to its overvalued currency. Table 10: Concentrated Apple Juice Trade of the EU-27 Concentrated Apple Juice Imports of the EU-27, 2009/10 and 2010/11 MY 2009/10 MY 2010/11 Country MT US$ MT US$ China 88,897 67,712,992 124,980 151,319,805 Turkey 35,061 34,834,066 54,616 93,523,632 Ukraine 31,704 16,279,088 19,211 25,456,061 Moldova 17,261 11,717,502 11,759 16,541,680 Chile 321 2,363,220 7,616 12,567,493 Serbia 1,980 318,695 6,020 11,419,914 Brazil 2,387 1,553,571 4,170 4,855,762 Iran 8,597 5,774,762 2,868 3,972,298 Argentina 693 1,194,022 2,726 3,819,297 Other Countries 18,636 13,081,000 8,482 13,280,000 Total Imports 205,537 154,828,918 242,448 336,755,942 Table 11: Concentrated Apple Juice Trade of the EU-27 Concentrated Apple Juice Exports of the EU-27, 2009/10 and 2010/11 MY 2009/10 MY 2010/11 Country MT US$ MTUS$ Norway 9,018 11,422,695 9,343 16,702,847 Saudi Arabia 7,609 8,907,111 7,616 15,556,950 Japan 6,448 10,082,320 7,453 13,860,181 U.A. Emirates 2,552 3,209,326 2,403 4,403,171 Nigeria 20 1,923,345 1,982 2,476,873 Russia 1,320 1,753,830 1,344 2,097,040 Egypt 797 2,089,607 1,246 1,790,378 Other Countries 12,601 14,579,977 13,914 21,721,275 Total Exports 40,365 53,968,211 45,301 78,608,715 MT = Metric Tons Source: Global Trade Atlas In the last years, China increased its CAJ exports to Russia and the USA the most. About half of China?s CAJ is destined for the U.S. market. The revocation of anti-dumping process and the free access to the U.S. market since November 2010 contributed to the decline of China CAJ sales to the European Union in MY2010/11. In MY 2011/12 the EU must face very low CAJ opening stocks, weak domestic production prospects, and increasing import demands according to industry sources. Limited availability of concentrate from China and high international market prices are also among the dark prospects for the coming season. CAJ exports of the EU-27 are about 10 percent of its annual production. Export volumes are relatively stable, with some annual fluctuations. Major destinations of external sales remained Norway, Japan, Saudi Arabia, and other Gulf countries (see table 11). Sales to non-traditional CAJ export destinations increased most. Industry attributes this to the increase of demand in cheap fruit drink segment in some emerging Asian markets. Apple juice exports from the EU to the United States fell only to a few hundred MT in the last Marketing Year (2010/11) but the overall balance was still positive for the EU. The volume of the extra-EU trade of Concentrated Apple Juice was nearly the same as the EU?s internal trade turnover. In MY 2010/2011 the biggest net suppliers of the EU were (in 1,000 MT) Poland 131.04 Hungary 53.74 Italy 40.43 Spain 27.26 Total 252.47 The largest net recipients of internal EU trade were Germany 176.80 U.K. 70.36 Total 247.16 CAJ ? Prices Reduced demand for apple juice and abundant stocks eroded CAJ prices through MY 2009/10. Producer prices for industrial apples were depressed in that season (in Germany 4-6 ? per 100 kg; in Hungary 6-8 ? per 100 kg; in Poland 5-7 ? per 100 kg reportedly) which made farmers leave a part of the crop un-harvested in many countries. By the summer of 2010 the situation started to change. Industry sources reported one third less carryover stocks of concentrate (about 65,000-70,000 MT) for the opening of MY 2010/11 and a mere 5,000 MT for MY2011/12. Crushing apple prices increased and so did international market prices for CAJ through MY 2010/11. Poor crop prospects from the EU and modest export forecasts for China accelerated the increase of concentrate prices in the second half of 2011. Chart 4: Prices of CAJ imported to the EU-27 by country of origin September, 2010 ? July, 2011 Source: Source: FAS Budapest based on GTA data Table Grapes Coordinated by Stefano Baldi/FAS Rome Table 12: EU-27 PSD for Table Grapes (in ha, MT) Grapes, Fresh EU-27 2009/2010 2010/2011 2011/2012 Market Year Begin: Jun 2009 Market Year Begin: Jun 2010 Market Year Begin: Jun 2011 USDA Official New Post USDA Official New Post USDA Official New Post Area Planted 122,818 115,486 121,494 112,182 110,797 Area Harvested 115,695 112,301 114,553 108,056 107,223 Commercial Production 1,990,342 1,969,324 1,878,482 1,913,765 1,923,600 Non-Comm. Production 15,444 15,559 14,300 13,500 11,000 Production 2,005,786 1,984,883 1,892,782 1,927,265 1,934,600 Imports 563,556 568,084 590,000 542,973 555,000 Total Supply 2,569,342 2,552,967 2,482,782 2,470,238 2,489,600 Fresh Dom. Consumption 2,454,946 2,438,536 2,362,782 2,337,344 2,368,600 Exports 114,396 114,431 120,000 132,894 121,000 For Processing 0 0 0 0 0 Withdrawal From Market 0 0 0 0 0 Total Distribution 2,569,342 2,552,967 2,482,782 2,470,238 2,489,600 HA, MT Around 45 percent of total Bulgarian production (around 30,000 MT) is made of vine grape varieties used for fresh consumption only. Source: FAS EU-27. Table grapes ? Production The European Union is a world leader in table grape production, together with China (4.9 MMT) and Iran (1.8 MMT). At the same time, the EU is an importer of table grapes for fresh use. Most production is concentrated in Italy, Spain and Greece. These three together on average account for 90 percent of the total EU-27 production. After a dramatic drop in the past decade, EU table grape area continues to decline albeit at a slower pace. Reduced profitability due to increasing production costs and strong competition from other suppliers are the main factors behind the decline. Table 13 ? EU-27 Table Grapes Production by Country and Year (?000 MT) 2009 2010 2011 Italy 1,341 1,361 1,348 Spain 251 239 292 Greece 193 165 132 Other EU MSs 199 163 163 Total 1,985 1,927 1,935 Source: FAS EU-27 EU-27 Table Grape Production Total EU-27 table grape production in MY 2011/12 is estimated at about 1.9 MMT, which is 1 percent more than last marketing year. The slight increase is mainly due to a larger harvest expected in Spain which will offset the production drop in Greece, while the Italian production will likely remain stable. MY 2011/12 table grape prices are lower than the previous year mainly due to increased competition from extra-EU countries such as Egypt and Morocco. These countries generally export early seedless varieties to the EU-27 in May and June. However, this year, a delayed harvest in Egypt and Morocco resulted in increased exports to the EU in July. Therefore, much of the North African crop hit the market at the same time of the Italian, Spanish, and Greek one. MY 2011/12 Italian table grapes production is forecast down 1 percent to 1.5 MMT. In general, the harvest ? still ongoing for some late varieties ? has been very good both in terms of yields and quality. High temperatures and good weather over the summer allowed for harvesting grapes with a high sugar content. Table grapes prices significantly dropped at the beginning of the marketing year due to high temperatures which encouraged the consumption of other summer fruit crops (peaches, nectarines, prunes, and so on). Lower prices along with increasing input costs (mainly packaging and fuel costs) are threatening Italian table grapes growers profitability. Nevertheless, domestic prices are recovering and are expected to further increase in the next few months due to growing demand. th According to OIV (International Organization of Vine and Wine) estimates, Italy ranks 6 in the rd world table grape production and 3 as an exporter behind Chile and the United States. Most table grapes are grown in the south, especially in Apulia and Sicily, which account for nearly 75 percent and 25 percent of the total area respectively. Italia, Victoria and Red Globe are the most widespread varieties in Italy, covering approximately 66 percent of the table grape area. In the last few years, Italy has gradually moved to seedless grapes cultivation due to a general price drop and to a declining interest from some foreign markets toward seeded grapes. However, seedless varieties grown in Italy still represent 5 percent of the total. In fact, although seedless varieties prices are substantially higher than those of seeded grapes, yields are lower, and seedless varieties require more labor and more capital. Sugraone (8 percent of total area) and Crimson are the most widespread seedless varieties followed by Thompson, Centennial, Sublime, and others. Chart 5: Average farm gate prices table grapes in Italy (Euro/kg) Source: ISMEA, Agricultural Marketing Center. In Spain, according to the latest forecast published by the Ministry of Environment and Rural and Marine Affairs (MARM), table grape production for MY 2011/12 is expected to increase compared to the previous year, to 291,700 MT. Despite adverse weather in some areas of the main producing region, the weather has been generally favorable. In Murcia, production levels are expected to increase by 25 percent (145,000 MT) compared to previous marketing year. In the case of Alicante, production is reported to reach 105,000 MT, 30 percent more than previous year. The main producing regions are the Murcia Region, the Comunidad Valenciana, and Andalusia. In particular, Murcia and Alicante have 70 percent of the production area in Spain, although each of these provinces produces different varieties at different times of the year. In Spain, over 50 varieties of table grapes are commercialized. Some of the most popular traditional varieties are Aledo, Ideal, Muscatel, Dominga, and Napoleon. Seedless grapes show and increasing share of production and currently, roughly 30 percent of total production is seedless varieties whereas 70 percent is traditional varieties with seeds. Seedless varieties are mainly produced in the Region of Murcia, the most important producing region of this variety of grapes in Europe. The estimated area planted with table grape in 2010 is 5,159 hectares with a production in MY 2010/11 of 116,743 tons, of which almost 80,000 tons are seedless. Similar total figures to those of MY 2009/10, but 15 percent increase in production of the seedless varieties. Around 80 percent of seedless table grapes produced in Murcia are exported to the UK. Greece is the third largest producer of table grapes for fresh consumption in the EU-27 after Italy and Spain. According to industry estimates, MY 2011/12 (June/May) table grape production is forecast to decline by 20 percent, due to a wet spring and the downy mildew that affected some regions. Despite that, quality and size are very good, better than previous years. An even lower volume was predicted at the beginning of the season, but thanks to the stable, dry summer weather in Greece, producers have less drop out than usual. There are approximately 5,000 hectares currently cultivated with table grape. The main producing areas include the prefectures of Corinth in Peloponnese; Kavala in Macedonia; Heraklion in the island of Crete. Sultana (Thompson Seedless) and Victoria are the major table grape varieties grown in Greece. Table Grapes - Consumption Despite the enduring economic crisis, total EU-27 fresh grape consumption has been rather stable in recent years and stands at about 2.3-2.4 MMT. Moreover, some EU large retailers, are also trying to foster table grape consumption in the EU. Conad (Italy), Rewe (Germany), Coop Suisse (Switzerland), E. Lecrerc (France), and Colruyt (Belgium) have recently promoted the consumption of the Italia variety in their respective countries. Imports from third countries, normally coming in the first half of the calendar year from the Southern hemisphere, represent approximately 30 percent of total consumption. Starting in June with the Spanish and Greek harvests, and throughout the end of the year with the Italian one, EU grape consumption is mostly met by domestic production. However, new players from the Mediterranean area (Egypt, Turkey and Morocco) have started to compete in the domestic market for the last few years. Italy is not only the main table grape producer but also the main consumer in the EU, with more than one-third of the total consumption, still predominantly the traditional seeded varieties (Italia variety). Following behind Italy, the main consumers of table grapes are Germany, the UK, France, and Spain. Despite the fact that seeded grapes are still appreciated in Germany and France, experts claim seedless table grapes are increasingly being demanded by EU consumers. Many EU table grapes farmers are indeed replacing old seeded varieties with new seedless varieties. Table Grapes - Trade The EU-27 is a net importer of fresh table grapes and imports for MY 2011/12 are likely to increase slightly as a consequence of growing domestic demand. In MY 2010/11 EU-27 table grapes imports further declined by approximately 4 percent while exports decreased by 16 percent. The import value on the contrary increased to $1.46 billion. Table 14 ? EU-27 Table Grapes trade Balance (MY June-May) 1000 Tons mil $ 2008/2009 2009/2010 2010/2011 2008/2009 2009/2010 2010/2011 Import 640 568 543 1,272 1,384 1,457 Export 162 114 133 273 206 245 Balance -479 -454 -410 -999 -1,178 -1,212 Source: GTA. The major suppliers into the European market come from the southern hemisphere, where production is counter-seasonal to the EU and where seedless table grapes are widespread, with Chile and South Africa the leading suppliers. Imports from the U.S. have grown but are still below 2 percent of total and are mainly directed to the UK market. The largest EU importing countries are the Netherlands, Germany, and the UK. However, while Germany and the UK are also the largest consumers (behind Italy), the Netherlands mainly serves as a trans-shipping point. Table grape exports outside the EU fell dramatically in MY 2009/10 but recovered slightly in MY 2010/2011, to about 133,000 MT. The EU mainly exports table grapes to Russia and Switzerland. Chart 6: EU-27 main table grapes import partners (?000 MT, MY June-May) Source: GTA. Chart 7: EU-27 main table grapes export partners (?000 MT, MY June-May) Source: GTA. Policy Coordinated by Tania DeBelder/USEU/FAS Brussels Common Market Organization for Fruits and Vegetables The EU Common Market Organization for Fruits and Vegetables (CMO) was reformed in 2007. The aim was to bring the F&V sector in line with other agricultural sectors that were already reformed under the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP). Council Regulation 1234/2007 established a single common market organization (CMO) for all agricultural products and replaced 21 existing CMOs. The policy changes agreed in the context of the CMO reforms for fruit and vegetables were incorporated in the single CMO by Council Regulation 361/2008. The old-style production-linked payments have been replaced by decoupled payments. The shift from production support to direct aid to producers was designed to improve the competitiveness, market orientation and sustainability of the sector. Producer Organizations (PO's) are the key elements in the EU's CMO for fruit and vegetables. PO's are legal entities established by producers to market commodities within the following categories: fruits and vegetables, citrus fruit, nuts, mushrooms, products intended for processing, and some cross-commodities. EU subsidies are not paid to individual producers but are channeled through PO's. In order to qualify for EU subsidies, PO's must submit an operational program financed through an operational fund. The EU's financial contribution is paid directly into the PO's operational fund. The calculation of the estimated amount of operational fund is based on the operational program and the value of marketed production, and the PO?s own financial co-financing contribution. All the implementing rules have been incorporated in a new Commission Regulation 543/2011repealing Regulation (EC) No 1580/2007. Import Licenses The system of import licenses for apples falling within Combined Nomenclature code (CN code) 0808 10 80 had been introduced in 2006 as a transitional system in order to monitor the imports of apples. New and accurate means of monitoring imports of apples have been developed and the obligation to present import licenses for apples ceased to apply at the end of August 2011. Fruit School Scheme A key objective of the reform of the Fruit and Vegetable regime was to reverse the declining consumption of fruit and vegetables. The European School Fruit Scheme (SFS) is one measure to combat child obesity. Commission Regulation 288/2009 last amended by Commission Regulation (EU) No 34/2011 is laying down the rules for applying Council Regulation 1234/2007 as regards Community aid for supplying fruit and vegetables, processed fruit and vegetables and banana products to children in educational establishments, in the framework of a School Fruit Scheme. All schemes would consequently include three elements: free distribution of fruit (and/or vegetables) in schools, a series of accompanying measures (for example information campaigns on healthy eating habits), and monitoring and evaluation. The scheme aims to provide fruit & vegetables to school children from the start of the school year. The SFS makes ?90 million of EU funds available to provide fruit and vegetables to school children to be matched by national and private funds and the system will be reviewed after 3 year. The school year 2011/2012 is the third year after the start. The main beneficiaries of the scheme for the 2011/2012 school year are France, Italy, Germany, Romania and Poland. For more information on the definitive allocation of community aid from August 1, 2011 to July 31, 2012: Commission Decision C(2011) 2008 of 30 March 2011 The SFS also requires participating Member States to engage in educational & awareness- raising initiatives on healthy eating, as well as the sharing of best practice. Commission figures reveal that some 22 million children in the EU are overweight, with more than 5 million of these classified as obese, a figure that is expected to rise by 400 000 every year. Information and documents on the School Fruit Scheme are available on internet at: http://ec.europa.eu/agriculture/fruit-and-vegetables/school-fruit-scheme/index_en.htm Maximum Residue Levels for Fruits Maximum Residue Levels (MRLs) for pesticide are harmonized throughout the EU. As a marketing tool, some retail chains in the EU exceed the EU regulations and require their suppliers to adhere to stricter company policies that limit the maximum residues to 30, 50 or 70 percent of the respective EU MRL (or so-called private standards). The legislation on the approval of pesticides is fully applicable since June 14, 2011. However, it is still uncertain how this will affect the MRL legislation. EU-Russian MRLs harmonized Fruit and vegetables are the largest EU agricultural export to Russia. The Russian Federation aligned some of its maximum levels for pesticide residues (MRLs) with the EU and international standards. The EU and Russian Federation scientific bodies have reached a common understanding concerning pesticide residues for fruit and vegetables, as some of the Russian MRLs were excessively strict. The amended Russian law entered into force in early June 2010. The development provides more favorable conditions for EU exporters of vegetables and fruit, such as apples and pears, grapes, citrus fruits and stone fruits (peaches, apricots, etc.). Fruit and vegetables are the largest EU agricultural product category exported to the Russian market and exports are expected to grow during the 2010/2011 season. The value of trade of these products was ? 2.3 billion Euros in 2009, mainly exports from the EU to the Russian Federation. The dialogue on harmonization of Russian norms with EU and international food safety standards will continue, on residues in veterinary medicinal products in the areas of meat and dairy products, on standards in the areas of plant health, veterinary inspection, contaminants, microbiological standards in foodstuffs, etc. For more information: http://ec.europa.eu/food/international/trade/eu-russia_spsissues_en.htm Certification of Fruit Shipments Plant products need a phytosanitary certificate to be exported to the EU. Phytosanitary certificates issued by an APHIS inspector are required to a
Posted: 27 November 2011

See more from Agriculture and Animal Husbandry in France

Expert Views    
Potatoes and Potato Products Annual 2012   By Foreign Agricultural Service
2012 Sunflower Crop Hit by Hot and Dry Weather   By Foreign Agricultural Service
Weather Conditions Limit EU-27 Oilseeds Production   By Foreign Agricultural Service
EU-27 Broiler and Turkey Sectors to Grow in 2012 and 2013   By Foreign Agricultural Service
Hot Tips    
French Agriculture and Climate Change   By Foreign Agricultural Service