Turkish Strawberry Suppliers Facing Hard Times in Export With the COVID-19 Outbreak

Published Apr 23, 2020
Turkish strawberry production has increased steadily, although not varying larger from previous years, production volume is expected to reach 490K metric tons this season. However, exports for the 2020 season are expected to be minimal due to COVID19.

Turkish Strawberries in Peak Harvest Season

Strawberries in Turkey start their early harvest in the middle of March. The key harvest season is from mid-April which lasts until July, and now is the season of major varieties including Chandler, Pocahontas, Tioga, and Balcali.

Annual production volume has continuously increased over the years from 376K to 487K metric tons. The expected production volume in the upcoming season is around 490K metric tons as the planting areas of the country remain relatively the same compared to the previous year (16.100 hectares).

Export Trends in Recent Years

Russia holds dominance in its share of Turkish strawberry exports, followed by Romania, Iraq, and Saudi Arabia. In 2019, exports to Russia were at 18.4K tons, a significant difference between Romania, with 1.8K tons. Exports have only started in 2000, but Turkey has made continuous efforts to improve its horticulture practices and transition from small, family grown farms to commercial-scale farming with varieties high in demand in the global market.

Export and Price Outlook for 2020

Strawberry exports have been extremely limited so far due to the COVID-19 outbreak. Exports continue at a minimal level. The export price was between 0.80 USD - 0.90 USD per kg on average for standard quality strawberry and 1.03 - 1.07 USD per kg for higher grade strawberries from April 15-16. 

The Graphs Indicate Export volumes for HS Code 081010: Strawberries, fresh

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