Ukraine tripled fresh apple exports in 2017/18
According to East-Fruit.com analysts exports of apples from Ukraine during the first half of 2018 reached 24 thousand tons, an increase of 3.9 times compared to the first half of 2017. Export revenue reached $ 8.2 million dollars, or 5.3 times as much as during the first half of 2017.
A greater increase in revenues compared to export volumes was due to higher apple prices in Europe as a result of frost damage in the spring of 2017 and a decline in the overall apple crop in the region.
It is also interesting to note that the exports of apples in the first half of 2018 were 38% higher than in the second half of 2017, which indicates the further development of infrastructure for fruit storage and post harvest handling, as well as the growth of quality of Ukrainian produce.
The head of the Ukrainian Horticultural Association (UHA) Fedir Rybalko estimates that the total exports of apples in 2017/18 season will exceed 40 thousand tons, increasing 3.2 times compared to the previous season.
“For the first time since Russian ban on fruit imports from Ukraine, Ukrainian farmers and trades exported more than 40 thousand tons of apples, which is proof that our apple can compete in quality and on the much more demanding markets than Russia,” says Fedir Rybalko.
“In the 2018/19 season Ukraine will collect a record-breaking premium-quality apple crop. Our association has been actively working on promoting our apple to the markets in the South-East Asia with the support of FAO and the EBRD for almost a year, preparing to export substantially larger quantities of products to more countries. We estimate export prospects in the 2018/19 season at 100-140 thousand tons, but we understand that it will be difficult for us to achieve such indicators, because we have so little experience in organizing systemic exports of apples to remote countries and the EU market in 2018 will be as oversaturated as well”, continues Mr. Rybalko.
EastFruit analysts emphasize that the geography of apple exports from Ukraine during the previous season was the widest in the history of Ukrainian fruit exports. At the same time in 2018/19 it can expand even more. However, the prices of apples, according to our forecasts, will be significantly lower than in the 2017/18 season, and the domestic apple price in Ukraine may fall to a record low level due to oversupply of varieties, which are usually only consumed locally and by Russian market.