The Mintec Benchmark Prices of Turkish sultanas (type 9, FOB Turkey) stabilised in the week of 15th September, at USD 1,875/MT, after rising by more than 10% m-o-m, from USD 1,700/MT on 18th August.
Market players in Europe noted a relatively quiet trading environment during the week, following the announcement of new season TMO (Turkish Grain Board) purchasing prices, which came below farmers’ expectations. A UK trader said: ‘We have not had many new enquires right now’. Another European trader added: ‘End users mostly contracted when prices were lower and there is not enough demand at the moment.’
Turkish authorities are yet to announce their forecast for this year’s sultana and raisin crop, although the USDA pegged production at 250,000 tonnes earlier in August, down 8% y-o-y, citing losses from frosts in Manisa in February and March.
Industry estimates range from as low as 230,000 tonnes to 320,000 tonnes, with most market participants Mintec interviewed recently estimating a crop of around 300,000 tonnes, in line with the INC (International Nut and Dried Fruit Council) forecast from May. The harvest wrapped up in mid-September and the quality and colour of the fruit are good.
Prices in export markets have been recently pressured by the weakening lira, which fell from 8.28/USD on 6th September to 8.68 on 20th September. The currency previously dropped to an all-time low of 8.76 against the dollar in June this year.