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US walnut prices fall on weak demand

February 15, 2022

1 mins read

The Mintec Benchmark Prices for California LH 80% walnuts (Chandler variety, light halves, FAS US) were assessed at USD 3.4/lb in January, down 8% month-on-month (m-o-m) and down 9% since the September’s peak of USD 4.2/lb. The January price of LHP 20% walnuts was assessed at USD 2.55/lb, down 12% m-o-m.

California shipped 53,516 tonnes (US short tons) of walnuts in January 2022, 15% less than during the same month of the previous year, according to data published by the California Walnut Board. Since the start of the season between September 2021 and January 2022, the US state shipped 311,552 tonnes of walnuts, 83,000 tonnes less (-21%) than during the same period in the 2020/21 campaign. Exports between September 2021 and January 2022 totalled 209,284 tonnes, trailing the previous season by 76,000 tonnes (-27%), whereas shipments to the domestic market were down by 7% during the period at 102,268 tonnes.

In the in-shells, total shipments reached 157m lbs between September 2021 and January 2022, down almost 50% year-on-year (y-o-y). The decline in shipments of shelled nuts was less profound, at 205m lbs during the period, down 7% y-o-y.

The market for Californian walnuts has been relatively quiet recently, with shipments out of California impacted by logistical bottlenecks, causing delayed arrivals to destination ports. The overall demand for US walnuts has been further hindered by solid availability and competitive prices of Chinese walnuts, according to trade sources.

The 2021 California walnut production has been estimated by the USDA at 670,000 tonnes, down 15% y-o-y. The crop receipts as of the end of December 2021 were reported at 720,163 tonnes, compared with 783,785 tonnes in December 2020, according to the latest California Walnut Board inventory report published in February.

Jara Zicha
Jara Zicha

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