Insights May 2023
Insights May 2023
- Harvest of the popular Hass avocado variety has begun. Strong production is forecast which will put pressure on prices over the next month.
- Australian citrus harvest is also underway with the Naval variety about to begin harvest in the Murray Valley and Riverland regions.
- The price of tomatoes across Victoria are continuing to rise with hailstorms in March impacting supply.
Table grape harvest is now essentially finished following a delayed start to the season. Wet and cool weather has caused quality issues across the Sunraysia region. This has driven concern amongst exporters, with key export markets requiring high quality grapes. Despite this, wholesale table grape prices are broadly in line with last season. White Seedless Thompson grapes are currently just over $2.30/kg while Dark Seedless Crimson grapes are sitting at $2.58/kg.
Australian citrus harvest has kicked off with mandarins being harvested in Queensland, while Navel oranges are about to begin harvest in the Murray Valley and Riverland regions. Quality looks good amidst favourable weather over the first few months of 2023. The quality of both oranges and mandarin crops is better than expected. High-quality fruit is typically exported to our Asian export markets. Demand from these markets is particularly strong this season which will support prices at an export level. A high cost of production is continuing to stress growers which will also keep prices elevated throughout the season.
Shepard avocado harvest in North Queensland is now finished. Growers are now beginning to harvest the much more popular Hass variety. Another season of strong production is forecast which will again put pressure on prices heading into winter. This will be of concern to growers, though last year’s record low prices are unlikely to be repeated. Hass avocado prices out of Queensland are currently $2.89/kg. This price point is broadly in line with longer term averages. Another season of strong production should see prices move closer to $2/kg over the next couple of months.
The price of tomatoes across Victoria is continuing to rise. Crops were impacted by severe storm events last year, with hailstorms in March further impacting the crops. Wholesale prices of the gourmet variety have now risen to $3.51/kg compared to the $1.16/kg reported during January.
Potato prices remain well above average despite trending lower throughout February and March as supply picks up. Prices should continue easing over the next couple of months. Production is still likely to remain constrained into June despite being on the improve. Meanwhile, onion prices remain above averages despite above average production amidst strong export demand from Europe.
* The average avocado price includes Shepard and Hass avocados
** The root vegetable index includes potatoes, carrots, beetroot, parsnips and swedes. Sources: Ausmarket Consultants, Rural Bank
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