Citrus export, Egypt

Egypt is committed to doubling its citrus exports

China is the fourth largest market for Egyptian citrus
China is the fourth largest market for Egyptian citrus


Reports from Egypt indicate that the country is very much committed to doubling its citrus exports in the coming years.

Citrus exports in Egypt are mainly done to Saudi Arabia, Russia, the Netherlands, China, Arabia, Bangladesh, the United States, Ukraine, and Jordan.

Saudi Arabia is the largest export market for Egyptian citrus, accounting for 18.4% of the total exports in 2019/20.

China is the fourth largest export market for Egyptian citrus, with a volume of 133,000 tonnes in 2019/2020, accounting for 8.7% of the total exports.

Recently, Khatimu Najib, the vice president of the Vegetable and Fruit Branch of the Cairo Chamber of Commerce in Egypt, pointed out that in the past few years, large-scale agricultural projects invested in Egypt have effectively increased its production.

Egyptian dates have performed particularly prominently, and it is expected that the production and the needs of diversified date varieties will increase in the future.

citrus exports, Citrus
Progress in export so far since 2005

In addition, the export of Egyptian citrus has increased to 5.6 million tonnes.

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Khatimu Najib said that the government will also continue to expand its investment in agricultural projects. In the future, production will increase and the export will expand continuously.

Citrus Exports

Egypt is the world’s leading citrus exporter showing rapid growth of exports in recent years.

In 2005/06, the export volume of Egyptian citrus was 600,000 tonnes, and seven years later, it had doubled to 1.182 million tonnes.

The total export volume in 2019/2020 increased by 29% based on the volume from the previous five years and it reached 1.52 million tonnes.

Egypt is actively expanding its market at the moment and is committed to doubling its citrus export volume.

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The Egyptian citrus season has started well fuelled by strong demand and is likely to see a big increase in volumes this season, according to Vanguard.

The company said that Egyptian citrus export volume is expected to grow by 20 percent over the approximately 80 million cartons shipped last year.

This increase is in large part due to new plantings and young trees coming into production. In addition, advanced agricultural practices and preparation techniques are playing a significant role in the increasing volumes of citrus fit for export.

Lastly, investments in new packing technologies is also helping to get more citrus on the shelf.

In 2019-20 there were weather challenges with a strong heatwave that disrupted fruit growth resulting in a slightly reduced crop.

This growing season, the weather was nearly perfect for citrus farming that will help Egypt to reach an increase in volume.

All provisional information received points to a record crop with very good quality when looking at color, skin texture, firmness and flavor, Vanguard said.

The Navel crop has started harvest and the fruit is looking very good. Sugar levels are high at around 13-14% and the taste notes are great.

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Fruit is firm and skins are smooth with a full orange colour. The fruit is slightly bigger than last year and peak on count 48/56. Egyptian Navels are expected to keep running until middle January (week 3) with some growers finishing slightly later in week 5.

After Navels, growers will turn their attention to the Valencia variety at the end of January (Week 5). The Valencia crop, although still 6 weeks away, is also looking very promising with peak sizes expected around counts 56/64.

The skins are smooth and the condition seems stronger than last year, which will yield longer shelf life and better eating quality.

Looking at soft citrus, growers are busy with Fremont and Merave crops. Size spread is good and brix levels are between 12 and 14%.

Volume is expected to be down by around 20% due to the alternative bearing nature of soft citrus. The 3 varieties already being packed are Orri, Honey Murcott and Golden Nugget.

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Orri will finish off by the end of January (week 5) and Honey Murcotts will finish by the end of April (week 18). Fruit size spread is good, and the fruit quality is better than last year with smooth skins and very good eating quality.

In summary, Vanguard predicts an Egyptian Citrus season filled with good quality and condition, and with good volumes to match.

With continued positive weather and no unforeseen interruptions, this season’s total Egyptian citrus crop is estimated to yield between 96 – 100 million cartons packed.


The Choice Press is an online news portal that seeks to project what the gallant small-scale farmers in Africa are doing. We basically report on everything that has to do with agriculture and agribusiness, especially in Ghana.
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