2022 pressing season: High quality, volume below expectations - Fruit juice producers press 382 million litres of apple juice
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According to the Association of the German Fruit Juice Industry (Verband der deutschen Fruchtsaft-Industrie e. V., VdF), domestic fruit juice producers pressed around 382 million litres of apple juice in 2022, 68 million litres of which were organic. "For the third time in a row, the quantity pressed is below the forecast and we unfortunately see the trend confirmed that the performance of the domestic orchards is declining," Klaus Heitlinger, VdF Managing Director, comments on the pressing results. Deliveries from the dessert fruit sector, which came under pressure due to weak sales, provided relief. Here the processing sector was able to support the fresh market significantly. The quality of the 2022 vintage is more than satisfactory. "The weather made a positive contribution here and ensured exceptionally aromatic apples," Heitlinger continues.
Fruit juice production in challenging times
Weather-related harvest fluctuations and the associated availability of raw material are part of the normal business operations of fruit juice producers. However, the weather extremes of recent years are increasingly increasing the economic risk for the companies, as there can be considerable fluctuations or even complete crop failures for individual types of fruit. In the orchard fruit sector, the situation is aggravated by the fact that harvest volumes will continue to fall each year, as the stocks are over-aged and unable to withstand the climate stress. This year, weak sales on the fresh market were able to compensate to some extent. The higher sorting quota went to the processing sector and was thus able to support the fresh market.
However, the tense situation in the energy sector, where costs have tripled in some cases, continues to make planning for the new year difficult. For VdF Managing Director Heitlinger, all players are equally challenged in this challenging market situation: "Mutual understanding and acceptance for the greatly increased expenditure on the part of our member companies is a decisive factor for the sustainable safeguarding of the extraordinarily diverse German fruit juice market with hundreds of companies, from the regionally operating wine press to the internationally established branded goods manufacturer."
Fruit juices have a tradition of over 150 years in Germany. No other country in the world has as many fruit juice producers as we do. Around 300 companies produce about three billion litres of fruit and vegetable juice, fruit and vegetable nectar and still fruit juice drinks every year.