Nectarines account for a third of the Spanish stonefruit crop

Spanish stonefruit output is forecast to increase by 13 per cent year on year, according to the Spanish association of agri-food co-ops.

While nectarine, peach and flat peach production is expected to increase, apricot output is forecast to fall. Intense rainfall in March and frosts in February caused serious damage, particularly to extra-early and early varieties.

Total output from Spain is forecast by the co-ops to reach 1.5 million tonnes. Nectarines account for 34 per cent of the crop and peaches 20 per cent. These lines are forecast to have substantial increases.
Meanwhile, the persistent rainfall and some incidence of frost and hail have been problematic for fruit set in apricots and so output across Spain is expected to be some 13.2 per cent down year on year. Plums are forecast to increase in volume by seven per cent year on year.

However, late flowering in the main crop varieties this year means that an accurate forecast for these is difficult and volumes may yet vary on predictions.

Heavy rainfall has also led to a delay in the harvest of some four to five days in the region of Extremadura on some lines and up to two weeks on cherries. Producers are therefore concerned that there could be an overlap in varieties as the season progresses.