September sales on trend.
Australian almond sales remain on pace to clear processor warehouses by season’s end after another significant sales month in September.
Overall sales volumes are up 11% on the same time last year (ie: March to September) and the total volume of 88,873 is less than 15,000 from the actual crop intake for the season.
ABA CEO Tim Jackson said pricing remains flat but the lower Australian dollar against the US dollar is propping up grower returns.
“It is clear that all processors are working toward clearing their inventory with the view of starting what looks like being a strong crop in 2024 with empty warehouses,” he said.
“As reported last month, the industry’s actual intake for the season was 103,381 tonnes so to be at almost 89,000 tonnes sold after only seven months suggests that record sales to manufacturing markets indicates a lot of lower grade and old season stock has been sold.”
“Carry out will be almost non-existent for the first time in many years one would think.”
Domestic sales in September were in line with longer term averages which is a pleasing trend that bucks the season long soft numbers coming out of Australian retailers. Traditionally, September through to November are the biggest domestic sales months so all eyes will be on the figures for the next two months.
In contrast exports were down 20% on the same month last year, but that was inevitable given the reduced availability of stock. Sales powerhouse China is down 26% on last year, but India remains strong, up 132% up on same month last year and still up 105% for the season.
Value adding markets like Turkiye (up 153%), Spain (up 76%) and the USA – up 125% with purchases of potential recycling low grade material – have been key drivers in volume so far. Mr Jackson said forecasts of a dry summer has growers and processors hoping for a trouble free lead up to harvest which should produce high quality kernel and inshell in much larger volumes to this year.