Apple shortage to boost juice price
Juice processors and cider makers could be paying up to $1,000 a tonne for apples by the end of the year, because of a shortage of fruit in some regions, according to fruit grower Batlow Fruit Co-Operative.
A range of severe weather events, including heatwaves and frost, contributed to lower apple crops across the country this year.
John Power, General Manager of the Batlow Fruit Co-Operative in south-west NSW, told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation’s (ABC) Rural radio program that juice fruit would be in high demand.
“Instead of a bigger crop being picked and going into cool store and the juice fruit is separated at packing, which happens right throughout the year, this year a large percentage of the fruit that was going to juice went straight off the tree,” Mr Power told the ABC.
“The price was low to start with, but now the price is going up very quickly,” Mr Power said. “I suspect there is going to be a shortage of juice fruit as we come to the end of the year,” he said.
Mr Power said that earlier in 2014 apple growers would have been lucky to get $200 a tonne for juice grade apples.