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WPTC crop update as of 3 June 2022

06/06/2022 - WPTC - 2022 Season
The latest figures collected from WPTC members set the early June world production estimate for 2022 at about 38.8 million metric tonnes,  nearly one million tonnes lower than the initial March forecast, and with already some uncertainty as to whether the current figure will be achieved.
AMITOM countries 

The changes in the weather will probably delay the summer harvest but it will be clearer at the end of June. Quality looks good for now. 
Planting started very early at the end of March and will be finished next week. A total of 2,100 hectares should be planted.  Conditions were generally good except for the lack of rain and for a heatwave about 10 days ago when temperatures of up to 34°C burnt some transplants which had to be replanted. Harvest should be early. The forecast is now reduced to 155,000 to 160,000 tonnes. Everyone hopes for a better season than last year.   
Transplanting is now nearly finished, and conditions have been good to date apart from some localized hailstorms in the last few days for which damages are still being assessed, the worry being some disease development. Small areas will be replanted. The forecast remains the already reduced volume of 380,000 tonnes.  
Transplanting was completed between the end of April till 25 May, with only a small area now remaining due to rains. Some of the areas directly sown were affected by stormy winds during the last two weeks so the sowing had to be repeated (30-35% of the surface is directly sown, mainly in the eastern region under management of a farmers' cooperative). Total yearly forecast remains 100,000 tonnes.
North- To date about 92% of the expected surfaces have already been planted and operations should end by mid-June. The total surface will be known then but are expected to be lower than last year. The weather in May was unusual with some very hot day at above 30°C which accelerated the crop development meaning that the harvest could start a week early, around 20 July. Some storms and localized hail damaged about 400 hectares, but the full extent is not yet known. The crop looks good for now with no disease but there may be some issue with water availability as rivers are low. Tomato fields will be mainly irrigated by wells and should suffer less than other crops such as corn. 
The forecast remains 2.75 million tonnes (3.1 million processed in 2021).
Centre/South – An agreement on the rules and quality requirements was reached yesterday but not on pricing. Contracts need to be signed by 15 June for the coupled aid so negotiations should end before then. Surfaces should be lower than in 2021, especially in the Foggia area due to competitive crops. 
The forecast in the south remains 2.65 million tonnes, maintaining the total forecast for Italy at 5.4 million tonnes. 

Planting is virtually finished now and has generally gone well despite a few interruptions due to rain. There have been some hot days, but no heatwave and fields are looking good. Surfaces will be measured next week, and we will then know if all the surfaces expected have been planted. Some farmers did not plant this year, but the reduction should not be significant. The forecast of 1.45 million tonnes is unchanged at this stage.
It is hard to forecast in these environments. On the one hand, there is no reason at the moment to change the forecast of 600,000 tonnes. The transplanting is in progress and about 80% out of 7,500 hectares have been already planted. The weather is favorable, but this is the only one positive aspect for the season. Isolation is already reflected in many areas by the shortages of seeds, equipment and spare parts, specialists and maintenance, plant protection and fertilizers.
Planting is finishing these days and there are still uncertainties about the total surface. Some rain in Extremadura delayed planting by about a week while in Andalusia the harvest will be starting a month later than usual, in early August. About 10 days ago there was also a heat wave in Extremadura (up to 34-37°C) and some areas have had to be replanted. More details on surfaces should be available next week and it is expected that the forecast will be reduced from the 2.5 million tonnes current estimate.
As of 30 May, 12,206 hectares have been planted, 35% of which in the Cap Bon region, and the main varieties are Savéra (65%), Heinz, Ercole, Topsport. Due to weather conditions, yields should be lower than expected   at 70-80 t/ha (67 t/ha in 2021). A total of 850,000 tonnes is now expected to be processed (with a yield of 70 t/ha). 
The planting is already finished is the south where competitive crops did not reduce surface planted as much as was expected. Planting is ongoing in the north and some additional late surfaces will be planted after peas, but with lower expected yields and hand harvesting for both fresh and processed market. Consequently, the forecast is upped to 2.1 million tonnes. The weather has generally been cool to date, slowing plant development.

Some planting taking place, but the crop size is now expected to be of 200,000 tonnes at the most.
Hoping for a better future: a tomato field in Ukraine in May 2022 (photo A. Sypko)
Other Northern hemisphere countries 

Transplanting started in February with good climate conditions. The total surface area should be more than 18,000 hectares with more than 1,6 million tonnes of tomatoes. Most of the tomato processors have increased area due to low tomato pulp stocks and increase of the tomato market in Brazil. Tomato prices are around USD 85,00 /metric ton. 
On May 31st, USDA/NASS released its latest report that states the current projection is for 11,700,000 short tons (10,614,000 metric tonnes) planted on 234,000 acres (94,696 hectares). This would represent a crop averaging 50 t/acre. Over the last three years the industry has averaged 6.9% below the May projection. As we have stated before, the water situation in California continues to be of great concern as the season progresses. Plantings should continue for another few weeks in the state. So far this year we have seen some minor occurrences of curly top, frost, and some heat and windy conditions during planting. Overall, the crop looks ok at this point, but we have a long way to go.
Planting is well underway and expected to be 100% completed early next week. One area experienced hail earlier in the planting season, but overall, the weather has been favourable to date. Preliminary contract intentions are 544,900 short tons (494,200 metric tonnes).
It is estimated that the planting area is 770,000 Mu (51,333 hectares) and the forecast remains 5.8 million tonnes. The price of raw tomato in China is RMB 480-500 yuan/t (67 to 70 euro/t; 72-75 USD/t).
The estimate has not changed with an expected surface of 470 ha for a volume of tomatoes of 29,000 tonnes. 
Other US States
Mid-West production (all canneries) is estimated at around 500,000 short tons (c. 450,000 metric tonnes). In Indiana, planting started on time May 1st, soon got rained out for about 1 week, but with that slower start planting is now at about 60% planted right on schedule with tonnage flow. The first of May was wetter, but the last 3 weeks have been really nice. 

Southern hemispher

The total volume processed was 625,500 tonnes. After rains in South Mendoza at the end of February and some frosts at the end of March, the weather was fair and dry till mid May where the harvest finished. Country yield was 82t/ha and the price around 105 USD/t.
The Australian processing tomato season finished in the second week of May 2022 and saw a total delivery of approximately 227,214 payable tonnes to processors, of which 3,900 tonnes were organic and 357 tonnes were cherry tomatoes. The early season was disrupted by multiple rain events, resulting in one or more weeks delay for growers by the end of planting. Cool weather in November and December delayed plant maturity for the early part of the season and adding to this, heavy rainfall near the end of January meant that harvest began slightly later than planned, in early February.
Heavy rain at the end of the season affected the end of the harvest. The exact total volume processed is not yet known but will be around 1 million tonnes.

Total production was on line with target at 125,000 tonnes. 
South Africa
The country planned a 2,200-hectare crop for a 166,000 metric tonnes harvest in 2022. About 40% of planned volumes has already been processed. The season will end in October 2022 and currently forecast reduced to 140,000 tonnes crop due to mostly production challenges on the producers’ side. The raw tomato price is under pressure to compete with alternative crops in the farming areas.

WPTC world production estimate:
WPTC World Production estimate as of 03 06 2022
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