Peru has made strong inroads into the China export market, increasing by over 300 per cent to 7,000 tonnes with exports of mostly mandarins in July and August. The growth in demand for Southern Hemisphere citrus is part of the overall increase in China’s citrus imports which have grown by 400 per cent since 2009 to reach some 460,000 tonnes. In 2009 South Africa supplied 5 per cent of imports and the USA accounted for 85 per cent of the then 85,000 tonnes of imports.
In 2017 and the mixture of import suppliers has changed significantly. South Africa, Australia and other Southern Hemisphere suppliers now account for 54 per cent of China’s citrus imports; Egypt has become the leading Northern Hemisphere supplier with 22 per cent market share, followed by the USA with 16 per cent. Spain has gained market share, taking 4 per cent of exports to China during the Northern Hemisphere season from January to June.