Hamburg, September 15, 2021

Market Update - Infused Dried Fruits, September 2021

With most northern hemisphere fruit harvests being finished we would like to give you a brief overview on cherries, cultivated and wild blueberries as well black currants, the main fruits being processed to highest quality Infused Dried Fruits at our partner Zarecki Foods in Poland.

Unfavorable weather conditions influenced fruit crops globally throughout the growing season. Late frost events, hailstorms heavy rainfall and heat periods affected many crops negatively. Along with the skyrocketing cost of elementary production factors such as energy and gas as well as packaging materials or freights, the global fruit processing industry has a lot of challenges to manage. Let us have a closer look to the individual performance of the crops.

The local Polish sour cherry crop ended up abt. 10% short at +/- 160.000MT. Still that leaves sour cherries to be one of the well performing crops in Poland and Europe. However due to a progressing mechanical harvest in PL (30-40%), the availability of high quality grade sour cherries for drying decreased. Currently offers for A Grade IQF fruits are limited with prices up by 40% compared to initial offers at the early stage of the harvest. The Serbian sour cherry crop turned out to be short 20-30% compared to 2020.

The US tart cherry crop is 30% below an average crop, as frost in May damaged orchards in Michigan, which accounts for 75% of the national production. Further to that, stocks of frozen sour cherries are already low due to a very small crop of just 140 Mio. lbs in  2020.

A smaller European crop, disastrous yields in North America, ailing alternative fruit crops and strong global and overseas demand pushed cultivated blueberry prices up almost 50% compared to 2020. ​​​​​​It will be interesting to follow how the South American industry will position in a few weeks from now.

With recently finished harvests in North America, hopes of a desperately needed good wild blueberry crop is likely to be in vain. Current dynamics point towards another difficult year with limited quantities, rising prices and no carry out inventories.

The European wild blueberry had been influenced by labour constraints. With EU legislation not allowing pickers to enter the forest at temperature above 40°C, picking slowed down and yields ended up below expectations. Current prices for IQF fruits are also up >12% compared to 2020.

Also black currants paid tribute to turbulent weather conditions in May/June. Especially the early varieties accounting for the majority of the fruit came in short. High demand and an overall short crop lifted prices up about 40% year to year.

Our partners and dedicated fruit experts at Zarecki Foods are anticipating and following those crop developments, same as all other relevant economic factors carefully with professional foresight, always driven to ensure highest fruit qualities at best possible sustainable conditions.

Please contact your BBS sales manager for more information on our Infused Dried Fruit products, qualities and conditions.