Spain oranges containers

The World Citrus Organisation (WCO) has released its annual Northern Hemisphere (NH) citrus forecast for the upcoming 2020/21 season, with volumes expected to fall slightly year-on-year.

The forecast, which will be presented during the second edition of the Global Citrus Congress on 16-17 November, is based on data from Egypt, Greece, Israel, Italy, Morocco, Spain, Tunisia, Turkey, the US.

According to Philippe Binard, secretary general of the WCO, Northern Hemisphere citrus production is projected to reach 29.34m tonnes, representing a 1.27 per cent decrease compared with the 2020/21 season.

Orange production is projected to decrease by 3.45 per cent to a total of 15.48m tonnes, while a slight drop is also expected for grapefruit (-0.34 per cent to 946,521 tonnes) and soft citrus (-0.7 per cent to 8.46m tonnes).

Lemon production, on the other hand, is estimated to increase by 5.64 per cent to reach 4.45m tonnes, the WCO confirmed.

In the EU, citrus production is set to fall 9.35 per cent in Greece, 7.74 per cent in Spain and a 2.62 per cent in Italy.

In the southern rim of the Mediterranean, production is forecast to decrease in Tunisia (-21.97 per cent), remain stable in Egypt (-0.06 per cent), and increase in Israel (+26.63 per cent), Turkey (+21.85 per cent), and Morocco (+5.53 per cent).

The citrus crop in the US is expected to decrease by 11.79 per cent compared with last year.

“WCO has also engaged for citrus with the China’s Chamber of Commerce for foodstuffs (CFNA) and Ministry of Agriculture (MoA) to collect their estimates,' Binard continued. 'This has provided an overview of the Northern Hemisphere covering a grand total of 83.2m tonnes of citrus from the Northern Hemisphere for the next season.”

This is the result of the forecast in China, where an increase in citrus production of 5.23 per cent is expected, reaching 53.9m tonnes.

“WCO will present its forecast during the second edition of the Global Citrus Congress, which is organised in cooperation with Fruitnet Media International and the support of CIRAD,' noted Natalia Santos-Garcia Bernabe, WCO’s deputy secretary general. 'The event will stream live on 16-17 November from London, Los Angeles and Melbourne.”

The event allows viewers around the globe to pick the most convenient time to take part live or to watch on-demand.

Last year’s Congress drew more than 1,300 delegates from 59 countries, bringing together producers, exporters, importers, retailers, and service providers from all over the world.

1,075 delegates have already registered to next week’s second edition of the Congress. More information and last minutes’ registration are available on