WPTC Crop update as of 17 September 2021
- Sophie Colvine
- 2021 Season
The harvest continues in most countries, and as it is the case every year, the final volume processed will depend on the weather conditions over the next few weeks.
Harvesting and processing of summer crop are still at their peak and at full capacity. Quality is still good in terms of brix, color & yield. The forecast remains the same.
To date about 115,000 tonnes have been processed, two-thirds of the total volume expected. The harvest will end at the end of September/early October in the southeast but only after mid-October in the Southwest. Rain yesterday and today may interrupt processing this week. The forecast is now reduced from 180, 000 tonnes to between 170,000 and 175,000 tonnes.
Factories were stopped a couple of days last week due to rain and restarted on Monday. The temperatures are now back to about 30°C and should go up to 35°C at the end of the week and the weather forecast is good for the next 7 to 10 days. Already about 77% of the total program has been achieved. The harvest is now finished in the south and continues only in the centre and north of the country. Quality remains good with brix around 5. The forecast remains unchanged at 440,000 tonnes.
Processing went well during the last two weeks, although colder days and nights than usual cause delay in the ripening of tomatoes. On 14 September harvesting is at circa two-thirds of the total expectable quantity. The remaining areas are in good condition, promising a slightly higher yield than before. The quality and brix are good, the average yields are medium as reported previously.
North – According to the IO, on 5 September 2.16 million tonnes had been processed, which is 70% of the contracted volume, with 4.2% penalties and an average brix of 4.95. Last week was good and it is estimated that on 12 September deliveries totalled 2.5 million tonnes. Due to very good yields during the last few weeks ad good weather, it is now expected that the total volume processed will be 2.9 million tonnes. Some rains are forecast for the end of the week which could disrupt the harvest.
South- The crop is developing well, with small slow downs due to low rain. Quality is still good. Some factories are already closed but others will run until October. A volume of 2.8 million tonnes should be reached.
The total forecast for Italy is revised from 5.6 to 5.7 million tonnes.
Already about 80% of the harvest has been done and it should finish during the first week of October. Harvesting is disrupted by rains this week but should resume normally by Saturday or Sunday. The final volume is likely to go above the initial forecast of 1.4 million tonnes, maybe to 1.5 million tonnes.
About 60% of the total volume of 550,000 tonnes has been processed to date. The harvest will continue till the middle of October if the weather is favourable. It currently is not as it is colder than usual and rainy. Quality remains good with average brix of 4.7, good colour and good yields (higher than in August).
In Extremadura, the harvest is going very well with good quality although brix has decreased since the start of September. To date, about 85 to 90% of the crop has been harvested. Heavy rain yesterday (50-60 mm) has interrupted the harvest which should restart on Friday.
In Andalusia, the last factory still open should close at the end of this week. There was also a heavy storm yesterday. Overall, the season in Andalusia saw average yields and quality with some issues due to the lack of water. 2022 will be tough unless there are significant rains during the winter.
Rain also affected the North yesterday.
The overall forecast remains 3.1 million tonnes.
The weather remains good with warm days and cold nights, but tomatoes are ripening more slowly than expected which means that many green fruits are delivered. Brix is lower in September than it was in August at about 4.8. pH is lower than usual. To date about 50% of the total expected of 820,000 tonnes has been processed, but a good weather is needed for another month to achieve this target.
It is estimated that 70% of the total surface of 16,030 hectares has been harvested to date. The forecast remains 1.57 million tonnes.
The estimate is to process 832,134 short tons (755,900 metric tonnes) this week. At the end of this week (week ending 18 September) we will have processed 8,328,491 short tons (7,555,035 metric tonnes). Over the last few weeks, we have been consistently coming short of the PTAB estimate. Yields continue to be below contract so far this season. With the recent declines in weekly delivered tonnage, it is highly unlikely the state will reach the 11,100,000 short tons (10.7 million metric tonnes) projection. Incoming brix is averaging 5.31% year to date vs. 5.30% last year at the same point in time. Quality and color continue to perform well.
Other US states
The Midwest/Eastern U.S. tomato harvest is nearing the halfway mark with growers harvesting above average yields per acre. Weather has been on our side except for eastern part where some acres were lost to the reminisces of Hurricane Ida. We anticipate growers yields to lower toward the end. With the acreage lost to Ida and lower yields to come our estimate is unchanged at 500,000 short tons.
Harvest is approximately 60% complete, with most processing facilities expecting to continue until late September/early October. Overall, the crop looks good, with some areas experiencing crop loss and an impact on yield due to the rains received during the growing season.
In the Kanto region, which is the main production area, the harvest has almost finished. The total yield may be reduced to 30,000 tonnes.
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WPTC crop update as of 3 September 2021