• 18 Jan
    Fruit juice consumption in the Russian Federation

    Fruit juice consumption in the Russian Federation

    Taking three of the most traded juices on the market (orange, apple and pineapple) in both the concentrate and not from concentrate sectors, Fruit Juice Focus analyses consumption in the Russian Federation for the 12 month period October to September over the past five years (2012 to 2017).


    Consumption of imported fresh orange juice in the Russian Federation is low in comparison with many other countries and what consumption there is (see table 1) has been steadily on the decline over the past five years, although levels have flattened out since October 2015. There is a notable drop of 69% when comparing the 12 month period October 2016 to September 2017 with the same period 2013/14. The majority of the countries featured in the table have shown a similar drop in exports to the Russian Federation.

    Table 1. Russian Federation imports of orange juice not from concentrate (NFC) (tonnes)
    Exporters October 2012 – September 2013 October 2013 – September 2014 October 2014 -September 2015 October 2015 -September 2016 October 2016 -September 2017 % variance  2016/2017 versus 2015/2016
    Germany 481 459 305 416 426 2%
    Belarus 43 119 534 488 425 -13%
    Finland 325 327 170 157 133 -15%
    Belgium 287 253 114 109 103 -6%
    Armenia 223 226 168 106 100 -6%
    France 580 425 263 107 99 -7%
    Others 4724 4211 1031 572 599 5%
    WORLD TOTAL 6663 6020 2585 1955 1885 -4%

    Exceptions to this trend are Germany who has been a consistent exporter to the Russian Federation since the end of 2012 averaging 417 tonnes year on year and Belarus*, where the quantity of fresh orange juice has increased from the low volumes recorded four to five years ago to levels averaging 482 tonnes over the past three years.

    Both Spain and Israel have gone from being two of the largest exporters five years ago to substantially less in the last 12 months with volumes recorded down by 75% and 82% respectively. The Ukraine shows a complete cessation of exports by September 2014 from being the largest exporter to the Russian Federation. This reported to be due to the political situation between the two countries.

    Imports of fresh apple juice by the Russian Federation from countries worldwide are also on the decline following a similar trend to that shown in fresh orange juice above. The figures (see table 2) show that the 3809 tonnes imported in the most recent analysis is 43% down on the 6704 tonnes imported four years ago and 15% down on the year previous.

    Table 2. Russian Federation imports of apple juice not from concentrate (NFC) (tonnes)
    Exporters October 2012 – September 2013 October 2013 – September 2014 October 2014 -September 2015 October 2015 -September 2016 October 2016 -September 2017 % variance  2016/2017 versus 2015/2016
    Belarus 119 216 709 1279 1856 45%
    Poland 776 752 418 322 419 30%
    Germany 359 369 246 279 298 7%
    Armenia 302 261 241 243 212 -13%
    Italy 130 155 117 126 152 20%
    Belgium 330 278 124 131 144 10%
    France 546 399 290 163 143 -12%
    Finland 352 243 155 80 99 23%
    OTHERS 4667 4029 569 682 486 -29%
    WORLD TOTAL 7581 6704 2870 3304 3809 15%


    Notable in the analysis is the substantial rise in imported fresh apple juice from Belarus* up 45% for the period ending September 2017 versus the same period 12 months before and a significant leap when comparing the 1856 tonnes exported by Belarus* to the Russian Federation compared with 119 tonnes for the period 2012-2013 – up 1559%.

    Poland was the largest exporter back five years ago – 776 tonnes – and is now only supplying just over half that amount at 419 tonnes occupying second place to Belarus* top spot. Germany in third place remains consistent in the annual quantities supplied with Armenia also showing consistent exports to the Russian Federation up until this past year where figures show a 13% drop against the previous period.

    Fresh pineapple juice consumption (see table 3) has been very stable during the past three 12 month periods analysed averaging just over 500 tonnes per year having dropped from a high of 923 tonnes five years ago. Germany again remains a regular supplier albeit at fairly low volumes, averaging 110 tonnes over the five years recorded and maintaining second spot to Belarus* who during the past year were exporting twice as much in terms of volume than Germany. The Netherlands have entered the picture this last year with a minimal amount of 56 tonnes up from zero in the three years prior to that. Both Finland and the Philippines were showing reasonable amounts of exports to the Russian Federation four to five years ago but have dropped away in the last two years to 21 and zero tonnes respectively.

    Table 3. Russian Federation imports of pineapple juice NFC  (tonnes)
    Exporters October 2012 – September 2013 October 2013 – September 2014 October 2014 -September 2015 October 2015 -September 2016 October 2016 -September 2017 % variance  2016/2017 versus 2015/2016
    Belarus 47 108 147 314 255 -19%
    Germany 121 139 87 105 100 -4%
    Netherlands 1 0 0 0 56
    Italy 24 48 20 18 33 83%
    Kazakhstan 6 5 5 31 22 -29%
    Finland 125 113 41 12 21 85%
    Thailand 30 11 10 11 20 91%
    France 29 26 8 0 15
    Armenia 67 53 25 9 11 17%
    Hungary 14 15 15 13 10 -20%
    Philippines 210 101 99 0 0
    Belgium 86 75 26 0 0
    WORLD TOTAL 923 899 533 527 556 5%



    As would be expected the Russian Federation imports most of its orange juice concentrate from Brazil – 75% in the most recent period recorded (see table 4) where imports from Brazil stood at 25123 tonnes out of the world total of 33714 tonnes. The Netherlands in the past have been one of the larger exporters to the Russian Federation peaking at 16304 tonnes (38%) of the total consumption back in the period October 2013 to September 2014 but even then, Brazil was way ahead supplying 50% of the total. The Netherlands have since then slipped back to 2989 tonnes for the last recorded period at just 9% of the total.

    Table 4. Russian Federation imports of orange juice from concentrate (FCOJ) (tonnes)
    Exporters October 2012 – September 2013 October 2013 – September 2014 October 2014 -September 2015 October 2015 -September 2016 October 2016 -September 2017 % variance  2016/2017 versus 2015/2016
    Brazil 26515 21534 27572 32199 25123 -22%
    Netherlands 7927 16304 5680 2746 2989 9%
    Italy 548 607 383 475 2637 456%
    Israel 2244 1607 1235 667 1389 108%
    Spain 0 134 548 525 844 61%
    Greece 576 296 0 63 228 264%
    Mexico 140 0 0 0 225
    Argentina 1 0 5 0 112
    Belarus 40 88 31 70 95 35%
    Belgium 5657 1799 711 112 28 -75%
    Germany 216 556 102 25 20 -20%
    Thailand 719 0 0 0 0
    Turkey 1 78 104 0 0
    Cuba 758 235 0 0 0
    WORLD TOTAL 45426 43287 36387 36898 33714 -9%

    Italy has shown significant growth in exports over the past two years rising from a total of 475 tonnes for the period October 2015 to September 2016 up to a total of 2637 tonnes for the most recent period October 2016 to September 2017 – representing an increase of 456%. Similarly, Spain has jumped up the ranks to 5th place with a total of 844 tonnes supplied to the Russian Federation for the most recent period recorded – 61% up compared with the previous period.

    Israel has been a consistent supplier over the past five years despite a drop of nearly 50% two years ago and sits in fourth place in the current analysis with 1389 tonnes of orange juice concentrate supplied.

    Belgium has dropped from third place five years ago when it was exporting 5667 tonnes into the Russian Federation to an almost non-existent figure of 28 tonnes this past year.

    Apple juice concentrate is the most popular of the three fruit juices analysed in this issue of Fruit Juice Focus with the Russian Federation consuming 84919 tonnes of apple juice concentrate compared with 33714 tonnes of orange juice concentrate consumed during the period October 2016 to September 2017. In terms of suppliers of apple juice concentrate – China is way ahead, exporting 48256 tonnes to the Russian Federation during the above period which equates to 57% of the total supplied by all the countries listed (see table 5). The Russian Federation is consuming 13% less apple juice concentrate than it was two years ago where in the period October 2015 to September 2016 figures where at a five year high of 97193 tonnes of which 61734 tonnes (64%) were imported from China.

    Table 5. Russian Federation imports of apple juice from concentrate (tonnes)
    Exporters October 2012 – September 2013 October 2013 – September 2014 October 2014 -September 2015 October 2015 -September 2016 October 2016 -September 2017 % variance  2016/2017 versus 2015/2016
    China 39758 45009 38791 61734 48256 -22%
    Uzbekistan 5499 5160 2466 4602 11594 152%
    Poland 362 864 24891 10415 11551 11%
    Belarus 80 258 4295 5162 6149 19%
    Iran, Islamic Republic of 4437 4677 1506 3134 3007 -4%
    Moldova, Republic of 90 140 295 2832 2035 -28%
    Azerbaijan 119 58 0 1200 795 -34%
    Turkey 1 800 524 101 484 378%
    Austria 171 246 276 7529 369 -95%
    Netherlands 104 35 16 28 206 626%
    Czech Republic 0 0 0 0 161
    Germany 333 277 229 154 127 -17%
    Israel 243 219 112 101 62 -39%
    Italy 76 44 70 56 57 2%
    Ukraine 33971 21389 0 0 0
    Hungary 0 0 4047 0 0
    WORLD TOTAL 85613 79214 77765 97193 84919 -13%


    Uzbekistan has climbed up to second place in the current exporter rankings with 11594 tonnes being shipped to the Russian Federation in the most recent period – up from their previous total of 4602 tonnes. Imports from Poland, who sit in third place, have fluctuated quite considerably in the past five years flattening out at 11551 tonnes in the most recent period – up 11% on the period before.

    Belarus* has also risen up the ranks of suppliers in recent years exporting 6149 tonnes in the most recent period against a figure of just 80 tonnes five years ago.

    The Ukraine – once a significant player five years ago has stopped exporting to The Russian Federation in the past three years reportedly due to the political climate.

    Consumption of pineapple juice concentrate has dropped from 11862 tonnes for the period recorded five years ago to 3934 tonnes this last period analysed – a decline of 67% (see table 6). But there has been a 21% upturn this past recorded 12 months of 21% compared with the previous 12 months – albeit from a much smaller base. The Netherlands export the largest amount of pineapple juice concentrate into the Russian Federation – just over 50% – and has been the top supplier consistently during the past five years.

    Table 6. Russian Federation imports of pineapple juice concentrate (tonnes)

    Table 6. Russian Federation imports of pineapple juice concentrate  (tonnes)
    Exporters October 2012 – September 2013 October 2013 – September 2014 October 2014 -September 2015 October 2015 -September 2016 October 2016 -September 2017 % variance  2016/2017 versus 2015/2016
    Netherlands 6211 6544 4094 2145 2000 -7%
    Thailand 3130 1834 1888 122 768 529%
    South Africa 1524 531 247 229 515 125%
    Israel 518 86 198 292 242 -17%
    China 0 40 440 280 200 -29%
    Brazil 0 21 26 66 69 5%
    Italy 51 64 58 61 56 -8%
    Belarus 14 11 8 17 43 151%
    WORLD TOTAL 11862 9644 7097 3242 3934 21%

    Imports from Thailand have dropped away in recent years to just 768 tonnes compared with 3130 tonnes five years ago. Similarly, South African imports have dropped from 1524 tonnes to 515 tonnes for the same period

    Source: Fruit Juice Focus from trade statistics

    *Footnote: The Russian Federation’s foreign trade customs statistics exclude trade with the Republic of Belarus and the Republic of Kazakhstan.

    By Caroline Calder Trade Data
  • 18 Jan


    Lemon juice is replacing citric acid as an acidifier in more and more products and it is moving to the top of the ingredients list and featuring more and more on the front label. It is being used as an acidifier in juice blended drinks where lemon juice concentrate is being used for tartness and other products that go from yoghurt to a very wide range of products. In non-alcoholic beverages lemon is considered to add the refreshing character to herbal, vegetable and fruit beverages and stands third behind orange and apple in the table of strongest flavours in non- alcoholic beverage product launches last year.

    In terms of world lemon juice supply for the period 2016/17 Argentina is way ahead at 61% leaving the nearest country, Spain, trailing at just 15%. With 75% of Argentina’s fruit harvest going to industrial use compared with only 35% across the other main sources of supply. Small fresh fruit exporters are losing ground and share to the big producers. Predictions are that demand for lemon juice will continue to grow and diversify into new usages and that new trends and changing consumer habits call for higher standards of fruit production and juice processing. Only processors that can meet these new standards will be capable of supplying lemon juice for the front label.

    Following his presentation at the Juice Summit on trends in the lemon juice industry, Fruit Juice Focus caught up with Santiago Martinez Founder of U-Citrus, a Uruguayan based sales and logistics structure for world-wide supply of fruit juices to talk in depth about how new customers are using lemon juice in a number of different ways.

    FullSizeRender[1] Santiago Martinez pic

    Fruit Juice Focus (FJF): Can you tell us about the changes in the ingredients list for fruit juices and how lemon juice has become a prime ingredient in recent years?

    Santiago Martinez (SM) There are three key changes and I will outline them here.

    Unlike other juices – particularly the main juices such as orange or apple, lemon has always been treated as a minor ingredient and not a fruit juice in its own right, except obviously for salad dressings.

    What we are seeing now on the demand side are changes within the ingredient list. Firstly, lemon as an ingredient has gone from practically non-existent to existent. Historically citric acid has been widely used as an acidifier in fruit juices and other products. This is not necessarily the case anymore. If you are launching a beverage product nowadays that claims to be natural you should not use citric acid as an ingredient. You need to use a fruit juice, and this is where we see the rise in popularity for lemon juice as a replacement for citric acid.

    With the huge rise in new product launches worldwide in recent years (see fig 1) claiming freshness and sustainability as a major selling point (reportedly 20% year on year for the past five years) a major opportunity has arisen for lemon juice to become the ingredient of choice to help these products fulfil these claims.

    The second key change is where lemon appears in the ingredients list for a functional purpose. Many of the new super fruit juices and super veggies are looking for ingredients that will provide the freshness that consumers desire. And lemon is the answer. You only need to look at the explosion of new launches in the beverages market and you will find that lemon is not only being used as an acidifier in these products but also increasingly to add that touch of freshness.

    And thirdly is the launch of the new lemonades (see fig 2). This is fantastic news for lemon because the enormous difference now is that the new lemonades are using upwards of 10% to 14% lemon juice content where normally you would have seen as low as 1 or ½ % in a typical multifruit nectar. Each glass of lemonade that replaces a glass of nectar in the consumer’s share of stomach represents a 10 or 20-fold increase in lemon juice consumption.

    Let’s take the Hollywood analogy and you can see how lemon juice has risen from a bit part player to a star role in the ingredients list. When you watch the credits roll at the end of the movie in the cinema there is a long list of names that nobody cares about scrolling up the screen. Lemon in the ingredients list has many times been the equivalent to “safety guard #3”. But now lemon can be seen in the opening credits as one of the stars or main characters of the production. That’s how much things have changed for lemon over the past few years.

    Why – because lemon is fresh.

    It is lemon juice plus watermelon, lemon juice plus herbs, lemon juice plus strawberry. All the other juices or ingredients are now no longer the main character. The main character is now lemon.

    And another interesting development, and I refer to my Hollywood analogy again, when lemon is the lead character, the star of the ingredients appears on the front label – this movie star needs to go to the hairdressers, to be well dressed for the red carpet. This means that the quality of the lemon juice at this level needs to be the best, whereas when lemon juice was just an acidifier at the end of an ingredient list of 10 fruits nobody really cared about the freshness or the colour of this lemon.

    The changes I see are: firstly, the replacement of citric acid.  Secondly lemon as a character of freshness in this new range of beverage launches. And thirdly, lemon as the main fruit. All this means we will have to focus much closer in the quality of the lemons we produce and supply. Another point to consider when talking about quality is AR’s. When lemon is not a tiny ingredient anymore, a whole new level of quality parameters need to be reached.

    FJF: This is a whole new set of rules and regulations then, being introduced for the lemon industry along with associated costs?

    SM: Yes, but basically those are being already matched by the main suppliers from the main countries of origin. At the same time, some origins will not be able to reach the new quality requirements that will become the new world standard.

    FJF: Lemon juice is obviously a good business to be in currently. You source your lemons from Argentina, can you tell us about industry and market conditions there at present?

    SM: Yes, we have an easier life than many other colleagues in the fruit juice business. Right now, lemon is a very healthy sector to be in.

    The good news about Argentina is that 75% of lemons are produced for industry already. The whole region is industry focused will be even more in the near future.

    If you look back at the orange fruit juice industry in Argentina it was larger than Brazil in the 1960s. You can see there a very easy example of what can be achieved when you focus in producing for industry at the correct geography.

    FJF: Are lemons resilient to disease such as citrus greening?

    SM: Yes, they are resilient to some diseases. Most of the orange trees were killed by diseases but the lemon trees survived. But if you are talking about HLB then there is no good news. HLB will arrive and we will have to live with it. We will have to do what countries like Brazil are doing and learn from their experience.

    FJF: Do you see any other countries or regions competing with Argentina?

    SM:  To be very honest, a good business will always create its own competition. This is a reality. Argentina does have an advantage, but will have to increase its focus in producing for industry and setting the world’s highest quality standards.

    The serious global buyers who are looking for significant supply of lemon juice concentrate with strict parameters of freshness, colour, traceability and the lowest AR’s content will have few alternatives to Argentina origin.

    FJF: Do you see the trend for lemon slowing any time soon? With the trends of sustainability and naturalness growing in developed countries they appear to be prepared to pay the price for quality and provenance, particularly the younger generation.

    SM: Yes, what is going on for lemons stems from the demand side. The demand figures are very interesting. We are growing our supply year after year and the demand is still there and will continue to grow along with the increasing new product launches that are promoting natural ingredients and freshness.

    To conclude: we are seeing larger production figures than ever before, and we are seeing the demand growing year by year. Our sales figures have grown substantially, specially to those customers who pack products based on these new trends. The new customers – those that are launching these exciting new beverage products on the market – are increasing their consumption year after year. It is definitely an upward trend. From the lemon industry’s point of view – long may it continue. Everyone is a winner.

    By Caroline Calder Features
  • 18 Jan
    Crop round-up

    Crop round-up

    USDA data – Brazil – Orange

    The commercial area in the state of São Paulo and the western part of Minas Gerais should account for 320 million boxes (13.06 million tonnes), a decrease of 19% compared with 2016/17

    Total Brazilian FCOJ production (65 brix equivalent) for 2017/18 is projected at 1.15 million tonnes, a 16% drop compared with the previous year. The São Paulo industry is expected to process 278 million boxes of oranges for orange juice production, 208 million boxes for FCOJ and 70 million boxes for NFC production, accounting for 1.052 million tonnes of juice (780 000 tonnes and 272 000 tonnes of FCOJ and NFC respectively).

    Total Brazilian FCOJ exports for 2017/18 are projected at 1.137 million tonnes, a decrease of 9% on the previous year. The São Paulo industry should contribute 1.082 million tonnes.

    Inventory levels for 2017/18 are projected at 60 000 tonnes (FCOJ equivalent) down 25 000 tonnes from 2016/17.

    USDA stock figures only include juice in the storage tanks of the facilities (processing plants, port terminals etc…) in Brazil. They do not include stocks owned by Brazilian companies abroad, e.g., in transit and port terminals in the US, Europe and Japan.

    According to the Brazilian Association of Citrus Exporters (CitrusBR), global Brazilian orange juice inventories were 107 387 tonnes (66 Brix) on 30 June 2017, which includes 6 872 tonnes of orange juice in storage tanks (processing plants, port terminals, etc…) in Brazil. CitrusBr projects global orange juice inventories on 30 June 2018 at 207 565 tonnes. CitrusBr global inventories include orange juice in storage tanks at processing plants and port terminals in Brazil and stocks abroad (vessels and port facilities worldwide).

    ORANGE JUICE (65 brix equivalent) Tonnes
    Season 2016/17 2017/18 2018/19
    Beginning stocks 147 000 6 000 85 000
    Production 859 000 1 372 000 1 152 000
    Exports 962 000 1 255 000 1 137 000
    Dom. consumption 35 000 38 000 40 000
    Ending stocks 6 000 85 000 60 000
    Total distribution 1 006 000 1 378 000 1 237 000
    Source: USDA


    USDA data – Poland – Apple

    Poland’s 2017/18 apple crop is estimated at 2.8 million tonnes, a 20% decrease from last year.

    The USDA estimates that Polish processors will use 1.4 million tonnes of fresh domestically grown apples in 2017/18, a decline from 1.8 million tonnes in 2016/17. Almost 50% of domestic apples are processed, mostly into concentrated apple juice. Except for apple juice concentrate, Polish processing capacity remains relatively low.

    Poland is the EU’s largest producer and exporter of apple juice and apple juice concentrate (AJC). In 2016/17, production reached 300 000 tonnes. The smaller crop in 2017/18 is expected to lead to a 27% decrease in AJC production from the previous year. Output will depend on the quality of apples on the market in the second half of 2017/18 (July to June marketing year).

    The USDA forecasts that the export opportunities for Polish apple processors in 2017/18 are lower. Higher input costs will increase apple juice prices and this is coupled with strong competition from China. AJC exports in 2017/18 are expected to reach 224 000 tonnes, a 20% decline from the year before. In 2016/17 Poland exported 279 000 tonnes of AJC. The main export destinations are Germany and other EU member states. The main non-EU export markets are the US and Russia.

    Exports of AJC to the US and Russia in 2017/18 are expected to decline due to strong price competition from China. In 2016/17 Poland exported 12 000 tonnes of AJC to the US and the same amount was shipped to Russia.

    In recent years, Poland has imported small amounts of AJC from other countries, mostly from the Ukraine and Moldova to blend with local supplies. In 2016/17, Poland imported 54 000 tonnes of AJC. According to industry sources, imported Chinese AJC would be able to compensate for the domestic supply shortages in 2017/18.

    POLAND – apple juice 2017/18 (USDA)
    (Tonnes) 2015/16 2016/17 2017/18*
    Apples for fresh domestic market 650,000 700,000 600,000
    Apples for processing 1,397,780 1,751,400 1,416,900
    Apple concentrate production 305,000 300,000 220000**
    * Estimate
    ** Including imported AJC mixed with apple juice produced from locally grown apples
    Poland – Apple concentrate exports (year ending June)
    (Tonnes) Commodity code 200979 2014/15 2015/16 2016/17
    Germany 145000 147000 117000
    Netherlands 26000 23000 26000
    UK 26000 27000 26000
    Austria 15000 18000 24000
    USA 31000 3000 12000
    Russia 21000 9000 12000
    France 6000 8000 10000
    Others 42000 35000 52000
    World total 312000 270000 279000


    USDA data – Europe – Orange

    Total EU orange production in 2017/18 is expected to fall 7.7% to 6.2 million tonnes, of which 1.3 million will go for processing, says the USDA. Spanish orange production is predicted to fall 11% to 3.2 million tonnes.

    EU orange juice production is forecast to fall 11% to 102 000 tonnes.

    EU orange juice imports in 2016/17 were 682 000 tonnes, of which 90% were from Brazil.



    USDA data – China – Orange

    2017/18 orange production is forecast at 7.3 million tonnes, up 4% from the previous year due to favourable weather and a diminished impact from citrus greening.

    Orange juice production in 2017/18 (October-September) is forecast at 43 800 tonnes, down slightly from the 2016/17 estimate of 44 500 tonnes. Industry reports that consumer demand for ‘not from concentrate’ (NFC) juice is growing and Chinese processors can now sell high-quality NFC juice at over twice the price of ‘from concentrate’ (FC) juice. Industry contacts also report that production of FC juice continues to slowly decline as consumer demand weakens. Major Chinese orange juice processors are located in Chongqing and Sichuan provinces.

    Orange juice domestic consumption is forecast at 96 200 tonnes, almost unchanged from the 2016/17 estimate. The USDA has increased consumption estimates by more than 30% due to reports from retailers that while demand for FC juice remains weak, consumption of NFC juice was unexpectedly strong, especially in top-tier cities as cold-chain infrastructure, marketing efforts and disposable incomes expand.

    Orange juice imports in 2017/18 are projected at 55 000 tonnes, unchanged on the previous year. Based on Chinese Customs data, 2016/17 import estimations were increased significantly due to unexpectedly strong import demand from Chinese processors opting to import ingredients for juicing as opposed to utilizing domestic oranges which have increased in price. Orange juice exports in 2017/18 are forecast at 2 600 tonnes


    USDA data – South Africa – Orange

    The production of oranges in the 2017/18 is forecast to increase by 2% to 1.43 million tonnes, from 1.40 million tonnes in 2016/17.

    The production of orange juice is forecast to increase by 18% to 26 000 tonnes in 2017/18, from 22 000 tonnes in 2016/17. This is due to the increase in the quantity of fresh oranges delivered for processing and the higher juice extraction achieved as a result of the better quality of oranges.

    The domestic consumption of orange juice is forecast to increase by 3% to 6 400 tonnes in 2017/18, from 6 200 tonnes in 2016/17, based on the increase in production and supply availability. The relatively high food price inflation has resulted in restricted growth in the domestic consumption of fresh fruit juices especially the one hundred percent fruit juice, and the shift in demand to orange juice concentrates.

    Exports of orange juice in 2017/18 will increase by about 6% to 25 500 tonnes, from 24 000 tonnes in the 2016/17, based on the available supply and increase in production.

    Producers in South Africa prefer to export fresh oranges rather than to sell to processors as export prices are eight times higher than prices achieved from processors. Netherlands, Botswana, Mozambique, Mauritius, Zambia and Zimbabwe are the biggest markets for South African orange juice exports.


    USDA data – Australia – Orange

    Production of fresh oranges is forecast at 480 000 tonnes in 2017/18, the same as the previous year, assuming average seasonal conditions.

    The USDA forecasts 60 000 tonnes of fresh oranges will be processed into juice for 2017/18. Total orange juice production is forecast to remain at 7 000 tonnes in 2017/18.

    In 2017, the national shortage of Navel oranges for fresh juice production led a number of processors to import orange juice concentrate for mixing with available fresh juice. Some processors used labels on juice bottles to advise consumers on the use of concentrate. In mid-2018, Australia will introduce stricter country-of-origin labelling to all products, which will make it mandatory to label fruit juice made from either local or imported juice.

    Growers have traditionally entered into 3-year contracts with juice processors for juice supplies, although shorter term contracts have been more common in recent years. Lower domestic prices offered by juice processors have encouraged farmers to switch to growing more profitable varieties such as Navel oranges and mandarins; away from Valencia oranges. This trend has resulted in smaller supplies for Valencia oranges, which is now impacting juice processors. In 2017, higher international demand for Valencia oranges has further reduced supplies for processing orange juice.

    Orange juice consumption has fallen over the last decade from 49 000 tonnes in 2005/06 to 41 000 tonnes in 2012/13. The USDA expects a further decrease to 38 000 tonnes for 2017/18.

    Per capita annual consumption of citrus fruit has declined over the last five years due to competition from other beverages such as iced tea and sports drinks. Health concerns are also driving consumers to move away from drinks with higher sugar content and imported concentrates.

    Orange and apple juice are the most popular products on the Australian juice market, but many new competitive products have been introduced such as fruit and vegetable juice combinations, organic juice varieties, cold pressed juice, coconut water, and mixtures with other beverages. Valencia oranges are harvested in winter, but are mainly consumed as juice in the summer, thus, some processors have used six various storage systems for juice, apart from freezing. Juice can be pasteurized and stored juice in 1,000-litre bladders at low temperatures to maintain juice supplies over the year.

    Australia exports small quantities of orange juice – exports in 2017/18 are estimated at just 500 tonnes, which was revised down from 600 tonnes in 2016/17. Processors import orange juice and concentrate to meet overall domestic demand.

    Imports of orange juice concentrate are expected to remain stable at 31 500 tonnes in 2017/18. Brazil is the main supplier of frozen orange juice concentrate (FCOJ).


    USDA data – Morocco – Orange

    Morocco’s orange production for 2017/18 at 935 000 tonnes, a decline of 10% over 2016/17.

    Orange juice production in 2017/18 at 35,000 tonnes, 43% lower than 2016/17 due to less availability for processing.

    Orange juice exports for 2017/17 are expected to be lower at 3 000 tonnes and imports are projected to be higher at 3 100 tonnes. Morocco began exporting volumes of single-strength orange juice in 2016/17 to the Netherlands and France.

    By Caroline Calder Trade Data
  • 17 Jan
    From Rejected Fruit to Premium Juice. How a leading Swedish grocery chain teamed up with a small start-up business to produce premium juice from the fruit that nobody wanted.

    From Rejected Fruit to Premium Juice. How a leading Swedish grocery chain teamed up with a small start-up business to produce premium juice from the fruit that nobody wanted.

    Just over a year ago two young entrepreneurs approached the Swedish grocery chain ICA offering to take their rejected fruit and recycle it into bottles of high quality fruit juice that ICA could buy back and sell in their supermarkets. This would reduce waste, generate income for both companies and benefit the environment and society. Simple and very effective – as some of the best ideas are. This circular approach to resources and waste management was recognised as serving as a source of inspiration for the whole of the retail trade in the region and the initiative was shortlisted for the Nordic Council Environment Prize 2017.
    Peter Hägg was the senior category manager at the ICA fruit and vegetable division when he started up this project with Rescued Fruit – now called Rescued – back in 2016. Peter is currently responsible for sponsorships at ICA and is involved in sponsoring selected humanitarian causes such as the Red Cross and the Pink Ribbon Childhood Foundation. Peter will return to his previous position in the fruit and veg team later this year.

    The ICA Group is a retail company with 1300 grocery stores in Sweden. The fruit and vegetable section of the business where the Rescued Fruits initiative was first launched is situated in Helsingborg and employ upwards of 80 people working within category development and the buying and replenishing of fruit and vegetables for all the depots within Sweden.

    ‘This circular approach to resources and waste management was recognised as serving as a source of inspiration for the whole of the retail trade in the region’

    Rescued, then called Rescued Fruits was founded in Helsingborg in 2015. The background was that there is too much good fruits and vegetables thrown away, unnecessarily. Rescued, salvage fruit and vegetables which otherwise would be wasted, fruit and vegetables that do not fit into corporate production. For example, bruised apples, wrong sized pears or weird-looking carrots. They check, sort and wash everything gently and then turn the goodies into great juice. The different kinds vary depending on the season, which means flavours vary too. The juices are sold mainly in coffee shops, restaurants and selected grocery stores in Sweden. Rescued now has 8 employees and has increased revenues by 237 % during the period 2016-17.

    Here Peter Hägg from ICA talks to Fruit Juice Focus about his experience of the Rescued initiative he helped to launch and why it is important today that ideas such as these should be replicated worldwide.

    Peter Hagg


    Fruit Juice Focus (FJF): How did ICA get involved with Rescued, how did this whole idea come about?
    Peter Hägg (PH): Normally it is not very easy for a small company, such as Rescued was then, to just walk into the offices of a large company like ICA and say we have a business idea can we have a contract please! Which is exactly what Truls Christenson and Cecilia Larsson did when they approached us at the Helsingborg offices of ICA. It did help that at the Helsingborg offices we have a forward-thinking management team which were able to speed up the acceptance and commencement of the project.

    These young entrepreneurs came into our office during the autumn of 2015 having just turned 29 and 19. And talk about good timing! The initial meeting with Truls and Cecilia took place one month before we were setting up the strategy for the coming year.

    They had some interesting questions regarding our business. They observed that the ICA operation in Helsingborg imported a large amount of fruit and vegetables and suggested that there must be waste in our supply chain.

    I was thinking about that for a while and I thought no, we don’t have much waste really. Especially not for apples where we know we have one of the smallest percentages that we record as waste in our warehouse – it’s barely 1.8% or close to this.

    But when I then looked at what 1.8% was in actual kilos it turned out to be 8000 kilos of apples which equates to approximately 11,000 bottles of juice during the course of one year. I then thought in more detail about the waste aspect of our business.

    Of course, those kilos I referred to above for apples are not constant from one week to another at that same level. It can vary a lot over time. It could be just a small amount of damaged items or it could be a complete container that is deemed as being of unsuitable quality or damaged in some way that has arrived and is sitting in our warehouse. This might mean 24 tonnes of fruit is not usable.
    On these occasions we call the supplier and discuss what to do with the fruit since the quality is not in line with the agreed specification.

    Do they want us to sort it? This would cost some money. Do they want us to send it back? This would cost the supplier money organising return transport. Or do they want us to try selling it for a discount price? Thereby reducing all profit and sometimes reducing normal turnover of accepted fruit with normal margin. If the above solutions are rejected the products will end up as landfill gas (biogas) and that will also end up as a dumping cost for each pallet. These are the normal solutions for a container of rejected fruit that arrives at our Helsingborg depot.
    After reflecting on this we realised that Truls and Cecilia’s proposal could make sense and we agreed to talk more.

    FJF: Can you explain in more detail what Rescued were proposing?
    PH: The business idea Rescued put on the table was that they would take all rejected fruit off our hands. Truls and Cecilia didn’t want to pay for the fruit because then, as they pointed out, it’s not waste. ‘We want to take care of the real waste’ they said. We at ICA could throw them all away but it would cost us at least EUR10 per pallet to do this so it’s a cheaper way for us just to send it to Rescued for free than to get rid of it.
    The plan that we agreed was that we would send to Rescued from our depots all the rejected, unusable fruit that we couldn’t sell in our stores. They would then process it into fruit juice, bottle and label it as ICA private label. We would buy the finished product back into our warehouse and then stock it for sale in our retail outlets.
    Having secured this deal with us Rescued were able to go to their bank and report that they had a contract with a major customer – ICA – thus securing a business loan to set up their factory and install the machinery needed to commence operations. The team behind Rescued made that happen within six months.

    ‘The business idea Rescued put on the table was that they would take all rejected fruit off our hands’

    FJF: When did the first bottles of Rescued juice start rolling off the production line?
    PH: It was June of 2016 that things began to move and we were in a position to start selling bottles of Rescued through our stores. We generated a lot of attention both in the media and with our customers due to the fact that no one had done anything like this before.
    FJF: How has the operation developed? What obstacles have you and Rescued experienced along the way and how have they been overcome?
    PH: One of the hard parts for the Rescued team is to make the operation viable where the quantities of fruits are fluctuating. To combat this as the company developed they have taken on a number of other big importers around Sweden providing them with an economy of scale which has made a big difference. Also at ICA we have run trials with some of our bigger retail outlets where they send back any waste from the stores to our warehouse and then we transport it on to them for processing.

    What we also did from the beginning was a conscious decision not to make any profit from this project. We decided that it was a great thing to be able to rescue fruit that somebody had planted and nurtured and grown from the soil and transported it across the globe only to have it rejected and on the verge of being destroyed. We all felt that this was a terrible waste, so we are doing this for a good cause.

    We made a small investment for the first year for every bottle that we sold to be able to make this work and to start in a good way. And now since the volumes have grown we have started to break even.
    Since we launched it as a private label brand it has enabled us to use internal marketing resources to tell the story about rescued fruits and promote the product in Sweden.

    Meanwhile they have also developed their own brand at Rescued which are now selling to restaurants, coffee shops and bars in Sweden. They have managed to create a really good premium label and are able to sell at premium prices in these restaurants and cafes with the result that nearly 80% of their turnover comes from their premium brand. ICA is now only a small part of their business.

    FJF: What happens when there is not enough damaged fruit in the ICA chain? Do you slow down production of the bottled juices or do you supplement it with undamaged fruit? How do you manage that situation?
    PH: We have discussed combining damaged fruit with industrial contracted fruit but we have never done it. I don’t think it’s a bad idea because in order to have an operation that’s running to save as much fruit as possible if there is 80% rescue or there is 100% or 70% it shouldn’t really matter because it’s also important that the shelves in the stores are always filled up with juice.
    If you leave an empty space on the shelves someone else will take the spot. We have not taken a decision to combine with industrial contracts yet. It could happen in the future. For now we have sold the juice in the category of fruit and vegetables. In that specific category in the stores you set something up every day and then you compare it from one day to another and decide how you will present the fruit and vegetables section. It’s not like an ordinary shelf of bottles of drink for example. We have accepted that during certain times of the year there will be a shortage due to lack of fruits.
    It is a very good thing that in the ICA stores we are able to display the fruit juices right next to the apples in the stores and this demonstrates to the consumers that ICA are very much responsible for what we do.
    Together with Truls and Cecilia we have also set up the diplomas whereby we reward the stores who are good at sending back the fruit and we can send them a diploma to pin up on the wall that says thank you for rescuing 200kg of fruit made into delicious juice. Most companies like ours always have empty space on the lorries going back to the depots as we are still transporting crates or rolling container pallets and rejected items from the stores. There is always transport for that so there isn’t any extra cost to us transporting this back to the depot – it’s just that we are filling up the trucks better.

    ‘We reward the stores who are good at sending back the fruit. We send them a diploma that says thank you for rescuing 200kg of fruit made into delicious juice’
    FJF: You say the price for these juices is higher than the standard pricing due to the more labour- intensive production methods?
    PH: Yes, that is correct. Even if the product is cheap (free in effect) you still need to collect the fruits. And when it comes into Rescued’s warehouse they need to store the fruit properly. Rescued also need to sort it before they commence juice production. For instance, they need to take away all the most damaged fruit and all the stickers on the apples – and we have a lot of stickers – and this is a process that needs more attention and involves more cost than a juice factory. And this is what makes our juice a bit more expensive when you relate it to everything else. Also, there are small things such as the handicraft of tasting the products and the mixing process to produce a delicious juice which adds to the cost. Remember, apple varieties vary and create different challenges that need to be handled by adding ginger, lemon or cinnamon to achieve perfection.
    Consumers are prepared to pay a premium price because they recognise that this is a good cause and the delicious result is worth every penny.

    ‘Consumers are prepared to pay a premium price because they recognise that this is a good cause and the delicious result is worth every penny’

    FJF: Are you considering extending this process beyond apples?
    PH: We have used pears. We started with marmalade from pears then we discovered after a while that one pear is one jar of marmalade and Swedish people don’t each much marmalade so we can’t rescue that much. We have also created a juice with pears and lemons and that works quite well. We also use different ingredients like lemons to be able to spice the juice even if its apple content of say 80% we can still use lemons and ginger and other similar ingredients. We can use different flavouring products when we have waste on those as well.
    FJF: Can you quantify how much fruit has been rescued since the initiative was introduced?
    PH: By mid-2017 after the first 12 months since launch, approximately 33,466kg of fruit has been saved from ICA’s warehouses and ICA stores corresponding to 54,336 bottles of juice. This continues to grow on a monthly basis. We look forward to hearing from companies in other countries and regions on how they might be introducing the same processes to their rejected fruit. Everybody can win from this initiative.


    We are so proud and happy for the cooperation with ICA. We have learned a lot from each other along the way. I still remember when it all began. Now it feels surreal that that we managed to fill the first 20 000 bottles with a funnel and a measuring cup. There are a lot of new things in the pipeline and we are looking forward to rescuing more fruits and vegetables working together with ICA
    Truls Christenson, one of the initiators behind the project at Rescued.


    By Caroline Calder Features
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