Exchange rates have hit the South African fruit industry hard, said Ronan Lennon, Capespan UK general manager.
Valencia citrus growers have been forced to look to other markets such as the US.
“The exchange rate has varied from 20 to 11 rand against sterling,” said Lennon. “We expect our UK citrus to be 10% lower than expected by the end of the season.”
Besides inflation and rising labour costs some crops, such as grapes, have suffered quality problems caused by early season rains. Apples have faced fierce price competition.
However, demand for blushed pears had been strong with varieties like Forelle meeting “incredible demand”.