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.
Spain accounts for approximately two-thirds of EU lemon production and is the world’s second largest processor after Argentina. According to the USDA, the 2017/2018 marketing year forecast for the Spanish lemon crop was 967,900 MT a 2.8% decrease on the previous year’s output of 995,900 MT. AILIMPO’s more optimistic lemon harvest forecast was 1,115,000 MT, a decrease of 3.7% on the 2016/2017 season’s output, which ended on 31 August, with 1,157,800 MT.
The main factor behind the decrease is the estimated 40% fall in the Verna variety output due to high temperatures affecting flowering in May and June. Verna and Fino are the two main varieties of lemons produced and production of Fino is predicted to rise by approximately 12% as a result of the new production areas established in the past few years.
Lemon processing volumes are predicted to be similar to 2016/17 levels. The processing market seems well balanced for the moment, with consistent quality and relatively stable amounts sent for processing. However, because of the growing demand from the fresh fruit market, there are invariable difficulties if processors wish to purchase additional raw material. These invariably have to be obtained at substantially higher prices, putting additional pressure on lemon oil prices. Hopefully, Spain’s continued investment in expanding production areas alongside raising yields will help
ease market pressures. However, pesticides use is still of some concern.
Nevertheless, Spain still plays a key role in the regulation of the market dynamics.
In the current situation the prices keeps strong with few signs to decrease.
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