Lemon oil from all corners of the world is one of Ultra’s core products.
Lemon has a place in 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.
Lemon oil is obtained by cold expression or steam distillation of lemon's peel.
As the 6th largest producer of lemons globally South Africa is not always considered a large contributor, especially for oil, yet it proves to be very consistent and reliable. Total production throughout the 2013/14 season reached 270,000 MT with almost 60,000 MT sent for processing. That is approximately 25% more than the previous year for oil production. South Africa can be very versatile when it comes to how many fresh fruits are sent for processing and so is capable of being in or out of the oil market as and when it is more commercially attractive to do so.
Recent USDA figures for the 2017/2018 lemon crop estimates an upsurge of 7% to 460,000 MT compared to last year’s crop, which was at 430,305 MT. Driven by a robust demand and healthy export prices, south Africa has increased the total area of lemon plantations from 4,667 hectares in the 2010/11 marketing year to an estimated 12,100 hectares in the 2017/2018 marketing year. The weather, too, has been promising in the major growing regions. Put together, these have had a major role to play in the higher crop size. Consequently, lemons for processing and exports of fresh fruits are anticipated to be slightly higher than the last crop.
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