Citrus production in Murcia shows a decrease of 2%

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Murcia’s citrus volume forecast for the current season is of 863,500 tonnes

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The Murcia lemon production will increase by 0.9%. / Archive

The Ministry of Water, Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries of Murcia foresees a citrus production of 863,500 tonnes for the 2017-2018 season, an estimate that reflects a production decrease of 2% with respect to the previous season, when 881,000 tonnes were obtained.

In his analysis on volume, the general director of Innovation, Productions and Agri-Food Markets, Fulgencio Pérez, stated that, “Although the estimate has decreased with regards to the previous season, it has also returned to having a normal harvest within a stable framework.”

Murcia’s lemon production stands at 580,000 tonnes and will increase by 0.9%. With regards to this crop, Fulgencio Pérez explained that, “The rains that fell at the beginning of September have had a positive effect and have diminished the water shortages suffered in certain areas. But in the case of Verna lemon a decrease in yields is expected, mostly due to the high temperatures that affected blooming in May and June.

Regarding the season that has recently ended, the final production of lemon in Murcia stands at 575,000 tonnes, 450,000 of which, correspond to the Fino lemon variety and 125,000 to Verna. “According to the final balance, the harvest can be described as normal and in line with the current productive potential of the Region,” said the director general of Innovation.

Descreases

The forecast for the current season indicates decreases in other citrus fruit such as orange. The production decrease in this crop is estimated at 8%. In mandarin, the decline is around 4%, with decreases in half-season Clementine and slight increases in extra early varieties, specially in new late, very productive varieties.

In the case of grapefruit, there is also a production drop of 21%, with thicker calibres but a lower yield per tree. Blooming has been irregular in certain traditionally warm areas that had some days of intense cold during the peak of the crop’s flowering period. The harvest decrease is more pronounced in older crops, while the production forecast for young plantations is similar to that obtained last season.