Processors start talking about contracts

Brazilian citrus processors have been starting to look for citrus growers to negotiate contracts. For a while, however, Cepea registered no effective deal. Trades should move at a better pace after the first official numbers about the 2008/09 orange crop of Sao Paulo state, predicted to be published until April by the Institute of Agricultural Economy (IEA) - Sao Paulo state government. According to market agents, the production should decrease from 10 to 30 percent compared to the previous crop, due to the drought effects during the blooming period in the second semester 2007.

The harvest of the new orange crop (hamlin and westin early varieties) has started, little by little in some areas of Sao Paulo state. The supply, however, is still low, since a great part of the fruits has not reached the ideal point of maturation yet.

Due to the irregular blooming in the second semester last year, harvest activities should progress in a gradual pace, reaching the peak by June, according to agents consulted by the Cepea. The production of these varieties is expected to reduce 50 percent compared to the previous crop.

Regarding prices, the fruit delivered on citrus plant (spot market) averaged 9.77 reals or 5.78 dollars per box of 40.8 kilos on Friday, Feb 29th, dropping 28.6 percent in Real over Jan 31st.

For the tahiti lime, the supply starts to reduce in the fresh fruit market, boosting the prices. The increases were also reinforced by the higher demand. On Friday, Feb 29th, this variety averaged 6.97 reals or 4.12 dollar per box of 27 kilos (harvested), increasing 76 percent in Real over Jan 31st. (Cepea - Brazil)

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