IndexBox has just published a new report: ‘World – Pears – Market Analysis, Forecast, Size, Trends and Insights‘. Here is a summary of the report’s key findings.

The pear harvest this year will fall by -5% y-o-y due to poor weather conditions in China and a decrease in harvested areas in the U.S. and Argentina. 

The drop in supply, especially from China, the world’s largest exporter, will lead to higher prices for the product on the global market as demand for pears will remain consistently high.

Key trends and insights
According to this year’s figures, global production for pears is projected to decrease by -5% y-o-y to 23.4М tonnes, primarily due to forecasts of a low harvest in China resulting from bad weather. 

Based on USDA figures, IndexBox estimates that the pear harvest in China will fall by -7.5% this year to 16M tonnes because of frosts in April, particularly in the agricultural province Hebei. As a consequence, China will diminish export deliveries by -25% to 435K tonnes. 

Production in the EU will recover from last year’s losses which were brought on by bad weather conditions resulting in a +13% increase this year to 2.7M tonnes. 

Nevertheless, exports from the EU should decrease after a poor harvest on the Iberian Peninsula where the produce is traditionally exported to Brazil.

In the U.S., the harvested area has been depleted leading to a projected smaller harvest. Similar trends are also occurring in Argentina. Exports from both countries are expected to decline this year.

Russia also faces a risk of a lower yield due to adverse weather conditions. In 2021 production in the country will fall by -15% to 61K tonnes causing Russia to ramp up imports to meet the high demand from the domestic population. Russia will replace the diminished shipments from Argentina with imports from Turkey.

Production in South Africa should remain stable, while exports will continue at the same levels as the previous year. According to IndexBox, exports from South Africa will total 414K tonnes in 2021.

China, as the world’s largest exporter, makes up a 24% share of global pear imports. The curbed supply amidst stable demand threatens to raise prices on the global market. 

In 2020, average pear export prices around the world were pegged at a 7.3% increase to $1084 per tonne, and this year, the rally is expected to continue.

Global production of pears
In 2020, approx. 25M tonnes of pears were produced worldwide. In value terms, pear production rose modestly to $29.2B in 2020 estimated in export prices. The total output value increased at an average annual rate of +3.9% from 2012 to 2020.

China (17M tonnes) remains the largest pear producing country worldwide, accounting for 71% of total volume. 

Moreover, pear production in China exceeded the figures recorded by the second-largest producer, Italy (738K tonnes), more than tenfold. The third position in this ranking was occupied by the U.S. (651K tonnes), with a 2.6% share.

Global exports of pears
For the third year in a row, the global market recorded a decline in overseas shipments of pears, which decreased by -7.5% to 2.4M tonnes in 2020. In value terms, pear exports declined modestly to $2.6B (IndexBox estimates) in 2020. 

In 2020, China (581K tonnes), distantly followed by the Netherlands (373K tonnes), Belgium (310K tonnes), South Africa (228K tonnes), Argentina (127K tonnes), Spain (116K tonnes) and the U.S. 

(113K tonnes) represented the largest exporters of pears, together achieving 77% of total exports. Portugal (95K tonnes), Chile (92K tonnes), Italy (92K tonnes) and Poland (46K tonnes) followed a long way behind the leaders.

In value terms, China ($668M), the Netherlands ($437M) and Belgium ($277M) appeared to be the countries with the highest levels of exports in 2020, together accounting for 53% of global exports.

The average pear export price stood at $1,084 per tonne in 2020, growing by 7.3% against the previous year. Over the period from 2012 to 2020, it increased at an average annual rate of +1.3%. 

Prices varied noticeably by the country of origin; the country with the highest price was Italy ($1,484 per tonne), while Poland ($811 per tonne) was amongst the lowest. 

From 2012 to 2020, the most notable rate of growth in terms of prices was attained by China, while the other global leaders experienced more modest paces of growth.