The year 2020 was very lucrative for the citrus industry. The record stock sold has confirmed its rise in the agricultural sector in the global market.
The citrus sector hopes to achieve another feat in the export market in 2021.
According to the outlook of the Citrus Growers Association (CGA), a volume of 158.7 million cartons (1 carton = 15 kg) is expected to be shipped at the end of the said season, an 8% improvement over 2020.
« If we were to line up the 146 million cartons side by side, we would have a line that stretches about 40,000 km. That’s equivalent to the height of 4.4 Mount Everest’s stacked on top of each other, » says Justin Chadwick, CEO of the Citrus Growers Association (CGA).
Such a stockpile, if achieved, would mark a new record as well as the third consecutive year of increased exports from the country.
While he is pleased with the health of the industry, Chadwick says there is still a lot of potential for the sector to grow. In particular, the industry plans to increase its exports by 300,000 tons over the next three years, as well as generate 6.8 billion rand ($455 million) and 22,250 jobs over the same period.
To achieve these ambitions, the CGA is counting on a production apparatus that should benefit from favorable weather conditions this year and the enthusiasm of farmers, which will be reflected in an increase in the area planted.
It also plans to work with the government and other industry stakeholders on improving access conditions to international markets and optimizing port logistics to move fruit to major destinations.
Citrus is grown on 86,000 hectares of arable land in South Africa. In terms of exports, it is in second place behind Spain.
© Photo Credit : African Manager