WPTC Crop update as of 10 January 2022
, Sophie Colvine
- 2022 Season
A total of 7,700 hectares were planted for a forecast of 640,000 tonnes to be processed. The harvest started on November 1 in Jujuy and Salta (NOA). Some rain and hailstorms in Mendoza and San Juan in December affected 400 hectares with different yield reduction but should not affect total crop much. Now, the harvest continue in the North (La Rioja and San Juan) with dry conditions and good yields.
Growers have planted 2,479 hectares of processing tomatoes, contracting 256,780 tonnes (this includes 3,000 tonnes of organics and 280 tonnes of cherry tomatoes). The harvest should start towards the end of January with the cherry tomatoes. Organics and then conventional tomatoes should follow on from first or second week of February. Planting was heavily disrupted early due to multiple rain events, resulting in about a week delay by the end of planting. October, November and the first half of December were cool with temperatures well below long term average, which has affected crop growth and maturity. Warmer weather over the past 3-4 weeks has boosted plant growth and vine development to the point that growers are hopeful of achieving tonnage expectations. The cooler start has, however, delayed the expected start of harvest by up to 2 weeks.
The potential production is 1,050,000 metric tons with a surface planted of 10,500 hectares with an estimated yield of 100 t/ha. The water availability is very limited, which is why the surfaces planted were reduced, but the planted fields have enough water. The harvest should begin during the last week of January. To date the conditions have been good, with hot weather but nothing extreme.
The current forecast for South Africa in 2022 is for 160,000 tonnes of tomatoes to be processed as follows:
• Lutzville (summer area) - 44 000 tonnes (harvest January to April)
• Musina (winter areas) - 116 000 tonnes (harvest May to September)
It is still early days, but the season is on track.
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