WC farmers predict bumper apple and pear harvests for 2021

A bumper harvest is expected due to last year's good rainfall.

Picture: Pixabay.com

CAPE TOWN - Western Cape farmers are predicting a bumper apple and pear harvest.

This follows good rain last winter, after years of drought.

The apple and pear industries generate more than R9 billion annually.

The Western Cape's deciduous fruit sector is among the many industries affected by the pandemic.

Exports suffered because of port closures.

This was especially concerning since 90% of its turnover was generated by exports and fresh produce sales.

However, a bumper harvest is expected due to last year's good rainfall.

Agri Western Cape's Jannie Strydom said that they were projecting a 4% increase for apples and a 2% increase for pears.

"We're talking about 38 million cartons of apples, and 17 million cartons of pears, so a 2 %and a 4% increase, respectively, is quite substantial."

The Ceres and Grabouw areas are the largest contributors.

"The turnover of the industry is in excess of R9 billion, so it's a great contributor to the economy," said Strydom.

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