Introduction of Chinese Citrus/Orange Industry
- Description: Orange—specifically, sweet orange—refers to the citrus tree Citrus sinensis and its fruit. The orange is a hybrid of ancient cultivated origin, possibly between pomelo (Citrus maxima) and tangerine (C
Orange—specifically, sweet orange—refers to the citrus tree Citrus sinensis and its fruit. The orange is a hybrid of ancient cultivated origin, possibly between pomelo (Citrus maxima) and tangerine (Citrus reticulata). It is a small tree, growing to about 10 m tall, with thorny shoots and evergreen leaves 4-10 cm long. The word "orange" comes from Sanskrit "narang". Oranges originated in southeast Asia, in either southern China, India, Pakistan or Vietnam. The fruit of Citrus sinensis is called sweet orange to distinguish it from Citrus aurantium, the bitter orange. In several languages it is known as Chinese apple (example: Dutch: Sinaasappel (China's apple)).
China’s marketing year (MY) 2008 citrus production is forecast at 21 million metric tons (MMT), up 10 percent from the revised MY 2007 figure, the result of favorable weather conditions throughout the major citrus producing areas during the crop development period. Orange production is forecast at six MMT in MY 2008 (November-October), up 10 percent from the previous year, as new plantings from a few years earlier have gradually reached full production. Frozen Concentrated Orange Juice (FCOJ) production is forecast at 14,000 MT in MY 2008 (October-September), down 22 percent from the revised estimate of 18,000 MT in MY 2007, because local juicing companies have grown cautious about producing large quantities, out of general uncertainty about the future of the market.
China’s orange imports are forecast at 55 MT in MY 2008, a decrease of 11 percent from the previous year, due to increased domestic production and higher prices of U.S. oranges.
Imports of mandarins are forecast at 18,000 MT in MY 2008, up 12 percent from the previous year. Grapefruit imports are forecast at 3,300 MT in MY 2008, consistent with the previous year. Lemon imports are forecast at 5,000 MT in MY 2008, up seven percent from the previous year, mainly attributed to lower priced U.S. lemons that are 30 percent lower in 2008 compared to the previous year. FCOJ imports are forecast at 43,000 MT in MY 2008, a decrease of 15 percent from last season, as a result of stagnant consumption growth in orange juice and uncertainties over China’s juice market.
Mandarin exports are forecast at 340,000 MT in MY 2008, down 40 percent from the previous year, mainly due to a fruit fly outbreak in Sichuan Province and food safety concerns about China-origin fruit following the melamine contamination scares. The global economic recession may also reduce demand for citrus. Similarly, orange and grapefruit exports are forecast at 100,000 MT and 90,000 MT in MY 2008, down 19 percent and 11 percent, respectively, from the previous season. Lemon exports, however, are forecast at about 12,000 MT in MY 2008, slightly higher than the previous year as a result of increased production of price-competitive Chinese lemons.