Grapefruit oil is processed from the peel of the fruit and can come in a number of types determined by its colour. Red, white and pink varieties are available which are usually grouped as ‘white’ or ‘coloured’.
Grapefruit is an excellent source of vitamin C and other nutrients and phytochemicals and is often associated with healthy living and diets.
As a flavour it is highly acidic and contains grapefruit mercaptan (a sulphur terpene) giving both a sweet, tarty and sometime bitter taste, somewhat different to most other citrus fruits.
The citrus industry in Florida has been struggling with the serious disease Huanglongbing (HLB) or citrus greening. This bacterial disease causes green, misshapen and bitter-tasting fruit, and eventually kills the citrus tree.
Citrus greening disease (or Huanglongbing, abbreviated as HLB) is a disease common to citrus plants transmitted by insects. Historically it is more commonly found in China and Africa but was first discovered in Florida in 1998 in orange. It is a bacterium that can grow quicker in hot temperatures and will ultimately kill the plant/tree where the fruit is growing. In the mean time the plant/tree will bear multiple seasons of small fruits, many unsuitable for processing. There is no cure for greening so the disease is hard to control once a region is infected.
The table shows how HLB has damaged fruit output, which has in turn restricted the volumes available for processing, increasing prices in its path.
|Type / Season||2011/12||2012/13||2013/14||2014/15*|
|Coloured (1,000 boxes)||13,500||13,100||11,500||11,000|
|White (1,000 boxes)||5,350||5,250||4,150||4,000|
*2014/15 Forecasts as at April 2015
Global grapefruit production witnessed an increase of about 1%. This was due to the fact that the China crop increased, which more than offset the decreased production seen in the USA. In spite of a marked increase in the production of fresh fruit, grapefruit for processing decreased significantly. This is because China does not process the fruits. During the 2016/2017 season, 575,000 MT were processed. But in 2017/2018 it is estimated that about 513,000 MT are available for processing.
The USDA pegs the Florida grapefruit production for 2017/2018 at 3.88 million boxes. White grapefruit was estimated at 700,000 boxes and red grapefruit stood at 3.18 million boxes. The Florida citrus commission predicts the 2018/2019 grapefruit crop to be at 5 million boxes on the consideration that weather conditions will be conducive.
In conclusion, there was a substantial decrease in crop size for 2017/2018, caused by citrus greening. This is the most pressing problem for growers in Florida. Hurricane Irma added to the woes of farmers and adversely affected crop production since several groves were damaged and many fruits were dropped. The current supply situation is very tight.
Market prices USD 125.00 /kilo (white)
Market prices USD 115.00 /kilo (Pink)
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