World hazelnut production trends
The global market for hazelnuts, unlike walnuts, almonds and pistachios, is not controlled by the United States. Here, the undoubted long-term leader is Turkey, which in 2019 received a record harvest of hazelnuts in history.
Italy also has a huge area under hazelnuts, but it consumes it in record volumes, so it is among the major importers.
In 2020, the main news was the loss of hazelnuts in the two largest producing countries - in Turkey from rains and other disasters, and in Italy from frosts. Therefore, world prices for hazelnuts, in contrast to the prices for walnuts and almonds, were very favorable. The United States, as well as Chile, is also actively increasing the area under hazelnuts.
According to experts, the hazelnut harvest in Turkey in 2020 will be about 620.00 thousand tons. In the 2019/20 season, Turkey received a record harvest of hazelnuts over the past 10 years. Accordingly, the export of these nuts from Turkey also became a record.
There are 80.00 thousand hectares of hazelnut orchards in Italy, of which 97.00% are concentrated in four regions - Piedmont, Lazio, Campania and Sicily. About 2.50 thousand hectares, that is, about 3.00%, are new plantations in regions that are not traditional producers of hazelnuts, within the next 10 years, the area under hazelnuts in Italy will reach 100.00 thousand hectares. Italy has not reached its potential of 150.00 thousand tons / year, therefore, in 2020, due to frost, the hazelnut harvest in Italy is below potential and is about 135.00 thousand tons.
While Italy is ramping up hazelnut production, Spain is focusing on expanding almond acreage. Since the entire nut industry in Spain is concentrated on the processing of almonds, the interest of farmers in hazelnuts is not very high, and the areas under this nut in Spain are declining.
In the 2020 season in France, there is a 14.00% decrease in the hazelnut harvest compared to 2019 as a result of frost damage. Almost all hazelnut processing in France is concentrated in one cooperative - UNICOQUE, which unites more than 350 producers and 6.50 thousand hectares of hazelnuts. The association processes 98.00% of French hazelnuts and exports them mainly to Germany, Spain and Italy. Hazelnuts are sold in their shells to end consumers.
It is quite difficult for French walnut growers to compete on price with products from the Black Sea region, especially from Turkey. On average, Turkish hazelnuts are 20.00% cheaper than French hazelnuts, and in terms of quality they are not inferior to products from the southwest of France.
In the US and Chile, farmers are very enthusiastic about setting up new hazelnut plantations. New hazelnut orchards have been actively planted since 2010. Now in the state of Oregon (USA) 33.00 thousand hectares have been planted, about 17.00 - 19.00 thousand hectares are already bearing fruit, and the rest will come into fruition in the next 3 - 5 years. On average, 2.00 thousand hectares of hazelnut orchards are added annually.
The University of Oregon is working on developing new varieties of hazelnuts that would be suitable for blanching.
Since Chile has a larger area for planting hazelnuts, the rate of laying new orchards in this country reaches 3.00 thousand hectares.
Ga year. Thanks to the use of intensive technologies and modern varieties, the average hazelnut yield in the United States and Chile is 3.00 tons per hectare.
In the next 5-6 years, we expect a significant increase in supply from the US and Chile, Georgia is expected to increase hazelnut production to 50.00 thousand tons from 40.00 thousand tons.
Azerbaijan also confirmed the forecast of hazelnut production at 50,000 tons, despite slight spring frosts, which did not significantly affect the quality and quantity of nuts. Azerbaijan is the second largest exporter of hazelnuts in the world, after Turkey. The main reason is that the main export volume of Azerbaijani hazelnuts traditionally fell on Russia. However, Azerbaijan has recently begun to increase the export of hazelnuts to the EU - Italy and Germany are buying more and more hazelnuts from Azerbaijan.
Georgia, which has been reducing the export of hazelnuts for several years in a row due to the huge damage that the marble bug caused to the industry, seems to be starting to restore production and exports. By the end of 2020, the volume of exports of Georgian new crop hazelnuts in monetary terms amounted to $70.70 million and was 43.70% higher than a year ago ($49.20 million).
Ukraine is also actively increasing the area under hazelnuts, although so far, mainly suppliers of seedlings are making money on this. Whether the country will be an exporter of hazelnuts is hard to say. Nevertheless, it is hazelnuts with enviable constancy that are included in the rating of the most popular crops for laying perennial plantations in Ukraine.
Moldova was also actively interested in hazelnuts. There were already more than 1.00 thousand hectares of hazelnuts.
Even Belarus also grows hazelnuts.
One of the main challenges of the sector is to improve the quality of hazelnuts and fight the marble bug.
The most affected regions are Georgia, Piedmont (Italy) and Oregon (USA). If in Georgia the problem was brought under control thanks to an active information campaign, then in Turkey they plan to fight with biological methods by spreading the natural enemy of this insect - samurai wasp - which reduces the population of the marble bug.
In general, the global hazelnut market in 2020 grew quite intensively - most of the leading countries increased both exports and imports. Therefore, interest in hazelnuts in the region will undoubtedly continue to grow.