, François-Xavier Branthôme
- 2019 Season
If the estimates of 36.766 million metric tonnes (mT) are confirmed in the next weeks, the global processing preliminary result of the 2019 season will be 1.95 million mT (5.6%) higher than in 2018 (34.815 million tons), but 550,000 mT lower (-1.5%) than the original processing intentions (37.48 million mT) established in February.
AMITOM members in the EU
In France, at the end of last week 142,000 net tonnes had been received by the factories which will continue next week (week 42) and maybe some the week after in the South-West, but all should close this week in the South-East. Weather conditions remain good. The yields are good, and the quality remains good even if brix falls (but the weighted average remains correct at 4.95). About 7,000 additional tonnes are expected to be processed for a final volume of about 150,000 tonnes, close to the contract level.
In Greece, the harvest is almost finished with about 390,000 tonnes out of the expected 400,000 tonnes already processed (97-98%). Only one or two factories are still open. Overall 2019 was a good season, with good quality and average brix of over 4.9.
In Hungary, the tomato season successfully finished with a one-week delay. The total harvested volume is approximately 100,000 tonnes. Season brix average is nearing 5. The company managed to fulfil all production plans.
In the North of Italy, the harvest is almost finished with many factories closing at the end of last week and only low volumes processed this week. As of 29 September, the net volume processed was 2.26 million tonnes with an average brix of 4.76 and penalties of 4.66%. Last week, about 121,000 tonnes were processed with an average brix of 4.5. The final volume will be between 2.3 and 2.4 million tonnes.
In the South of Italy, September was very good and enabled to recover some volumes with the late crop and many factories are still running. The final volume will be between 2.35 and 2.4 million tonnes, meaning that for all of Italy the total estimate remains 4.7 million tonnes.
The expected final volume in Italy remains 4.7 million tonnes.
In Portugal, the crop ended in week 40 with the last processing unit closing on 5 October. The last harvested fields were again of very good quality and yields remained high. The weather was good and sunny with temperatures decreasing during the night. Considering the yields as mentioned previously during several weeks in the season, Portugal had a slight increase regarding the initial estimation. Even though the hectares planted did not increase compared to crop 2018, the high yields compensated the growers. The final result for Portugal is 1.41 million tonnes.
In Spain, the harvest is already finished in Extremadura with a higher final volume than estimated due to record average yields of over 95 t/ha (last record was 90 t/ha). Fruit quality was also good with an average brix of 4.9. In the North, the harvest will continue for a couple of weeks. Yields are better for the late crop than they were for the early and mid-season varieties. The total volume is now estimated at 3.2 million tonnes.
Other AMITOM members
In Egypt, the last loop of summer season is delayed until the second half of October, and consequently harvesting is slow. There is nothing new from the last situation, all processors are waiting, and it is expected to start processing within a week.
In Iran, thanks to the good weather the forecast of 1.5 million tonnes will be met. Tomatoes will be harvested until the end of October. In Russia, current weather in October allows to harvest raw tomatoes that are still in the fields. Harvesting is slowing down with the two plants still open expected to finish on 20th October. Quality is ok, with average brix of 4.5. The estimated volume remains 550.000 tonnes.
In Tunisia, the harvest is now finished with a total volume of 807,000 tonnes of tomatoes processed, of which 790,000 tonnes for the production of tomato paste and 17,000 tonnes for canning.
In Turkey, the final crop is estimated at 2.2 million tonnes. In Ukraine, the season is running to the very end. By now 710,000 tonnes of tomatoes have been processed. Most processors have closed their doors. A few small processors will work till 15 October. Most likely latest forecast will not be achieved, and final number should be approximately 720,000 tonnes.
Other WPTC members
In California, the latest PTAB report states that 775,124 short tons (703,115 metric tonnes) were delivered during week ending 5 October to reach 10,77 million short tons (9,77 million metric tonnes) (See our weekly crop situations). Another 271,039 short tons (245,859 metric tonnes) were expected to be delivered this week ending 12 October, to reach 11.04 million short tons (10.02 million metric tonnes). Most facilities are expected to close at the end of this week so the additional volume processed next week should be small.
In Ontario (Canada), overall, harvest conditions were excellent with tomato quality being reported as very good with strong yields achieved. All processing facilities are currently wrapping up the season and will be finished by the end of the week, taking slightly over contracted tonnage.
In Japan, the total estimated volume remains 25,000 tonnes from 430 hectares.
In South Africa, the season ended two weeks ago in the Winter region with a total tonnage estimated at 100,000 tonnes, slightly up from the previous estimate. Added to 40,000 tonnes processed in the Summer region, the total tonnage is estimated at 140,000 tonnes.
The USA Midwest continues to experience very good harvesting condition with the exception of a few areas that have received excessive rain. Harvest is expected to be finished on 15 October. Yields have continued to improve and quality at the end of the season is excellent.
Forecast for the 2020 crop
In Argentina, the detailed area analysis will be done in November, but it is expected that 5,660 ha will be planted for a production of around 430,000 tonnes. To date, about 2,500 ha have already been planted.
In Australia the plan is to process 226,000 tonnes in 2020.
In Chile, following the most serious drought in fifty years, farmers want to plant smaller surfaces than usual. Processors are still trying to negotiate contracts but expect a 15 to 20% reduction in surfaces planted, to between 9,600 and 10,100 hectares. In Peru, the plan is to process 110,000 tonnes from 750 hectares.
Some complementary data
Sources: AMITOM, WPTC