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. The Spanish are the largest within Europe producing around 900,000 MT - 1,000,000 MT of fresh lemons in any given good year.
There are two seasons in Spain giving them around 9 months of harvesting during the year. The 'Fino' and 'Primafiori' type runs from November to March and the 'Verna' type from April to July. Depending on the year 20-25% of all lemons are further processed.
Today we associate lemon oil production with Italy and Spain (Europe), Argentina, Bolivia and USA (Americas) and even South Africa who are small producers on the global scale.
Spain is Europe's largest producer of fresh lemons and the largest producer of oil.
Lemon oil is obtained by cold expression or steam distillation of lemon's peel.
Once again with a bumper crop, Spain repeats its dominance as lead supplier of superior grade lemon in the European Union. According to AILIMPO, the forecast for the 2018/2019 lemon crop for Spain is expected to reach 1,300,000 tonnes. This is higher than the average production of the last 10 years (2001 to 2017 average) which is 951,385 tonnes.
Based on this data, Spain will continue to be the main supplier of fresh lemons in the European market and the second processing country worldwide.
Harvesting of the Fino variety will begin in September and an increase of 14% is expected due to good flowering conditions – leading to more fruit per tree – and also because of new plantations over recent years now coming into production. A production figure of 920,000 tonnes is forecast, depending on the amount of water available in summer and rainfall in autumn.
As regards the verna variety, the preliminary forecast expects a harvest of 380,000 tonnes, which would be a significant increase of 90% in comparison with last year. “We are a little jewel in the crown,” summarises with pride José Antonio García, Director AILIMPO when he talks of Spain in context of the lemon processing industry.
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