Absa AgriTrends 2022

Table Grape Market Dynamics

of price growth at the farm gate. Quality issues resulting from extended shipping

times and other issues resulted in substantial claim rates and have affected the revenue on the farm negatively. Additional

Average Table grape prices have shown solid growth between 2017 and 2022, with a slight dip in prices during the 2020/21 season (see Figure 4.7). This was in December 2020, as the marketing season started, and South Africa announced its second Covid-19-related lockdown which also coincided with numerous lockdowns in key export markets. This disrupted global trade which manifested in reduced container availability and longer shipping times, ultimately affecting the arrival time in foreign markets. Quality was also affected negatively which translated to lower prices. These challenges continued into the 2021/2022 season and were exasperated by weather and other operational challenges in the Cape Town port. As a result, although average FOB export prices continued the increasing trend apparent before the COVID-19 pandemic, these higher prices might not be reflective

local issues have also been added to make 2021/2022 one of the most challenging seasons that producers had to date. These issues include increased input costs and electricity issues that affected cold chain operations. Although our views here relate to average performance of table grapes, performance is very cultivar specific. Our market intelligence suggest that varieties such as Autumn Crisp, Sweet Globe and Sweet Celebration mostly outperform other varieties. In contrast to this, exporters are noting that markets for certain variaties have shrunk to the point where they will no longer consider these varities for export. It will therefore serve all market stakeholders to consider the commercial viability of different cultivars over the coming years. Another key factor to consider is quality and how increased production could affect the ability of the product to reach export markets in a good condition in times of increased shipping costs and unreliable shipping times.


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