Lemon oil from all corners of the world is one of Ultra’s core products.
Lemon has a place in so many culinary uses from soft drinks and cocktails to marmalade. However, it can also be used and found in household cleaning products since it can disinfect, deodorise, remove grease and dissolve wax and grime to name but a few uses.
Lemon is also used in aromatherapy to enhance moods and can be used for its anti-bacterial properties in other medicinal applications. In fragrances it gives a fresh uplifting and zesty note to any perfume, as it is highly volatile.
Interestingly the three top producers of fresh lemons in the world are not the countries we would associate with oil production; the top 3 being China, India and Mexico, which account for over 40% of the world production.
Today we associate lemon oil production with Italy and Spain (Europe), Argentina and USA (Americas) and even South Africa who are themselves small producers on the global scale.
Italy is Europe's third largest producer of lemons, behind Turkey and Spain. Their winter season runs from November until January and their summer season from April until July. Sicily produces 86% of Italian lemons. Femminello Commune (53%), Monachello (10.2%), and Zagara Bianca (23.5%) are the main lemon varieties grown in Italy.
Italy is Europe’s second largest lemon producer after Spain with most lemons destined for the fresh market. Sicily is the main lemon-producing region accounting for some 88% of domestic production. Femminello Siracusano, Lunario, Interdonato, Limone di Sorrento, and Limone di Procida are the leading lemon varieties grown. The USDA forecast 2018/19 lemon production at 400,000 MT, a decrease by 8% compared to the previous year due to hailstorms in spring 2018. However, quality is forecast to be excellent. In addition, Italy imports an estimated additional 128,000 MT of lemons and in total the quantity destined for processing in 2018/19 is estimated 72,000 MT, some 6,300 MT below 2017/18 levels.
Fresh fruit prices have fallen by 7% to 8% below the last crop, but almost 100% more than Spanish prices. The challenge is to find clients who are willing to purchase at these prices; but anything below these represents a loss for the industry. Despite the reduced crop this is not such a big factor. Due to fewer oranges a higher demand for lemons is anticipated from processors, to fulfil the working time. As a result, fruit prices are expected to increase again in March and April. Now is a good time to purchase and cover current requirements.
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