Driven by Strong Demand in the U.S., Global Lemon and Lime Imports Hit Record Highs - Global Trade Magazine
  July 20th, 2020 | Written by

Driven by Strong Demand in the U.S., Global Lemon and Lime Imports Hit Record Highs

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  • For the fifth year in a row, the global market recorded growth in purchases abroad of lemons and limes.
  • Imports into the U.S. increased at an average annual rate of +5.2% from 2007 to 2019.

IndexBox has just published a new report: ‘World – Lemons And Limes – Market Analysis, Forecast, Size, Trends and Insights’. Here is a summary of the report’s key findings.

In 2019, after six years of growth, there was a decline in the global lemon and lime market, when its value decreased by -5% to $16.5B. The market value increased at an average annual rate of +2.6% from 2007 to 2019; the trend pattern indicated some noticeable fluctuations being recorded in certain years. The most prominent rate of growth was recorded in 2008 with an increase of 15% year-to-year. Over the period under review, the global market attained the maximum level at $17.4B in 2018 and then fell modestly in the following year.

Consumption by Country

The countries with the highest volumes of lemon and lime consumption in 2019 were India (3.2M tonnes), China (2.4M tonnes), and Mexico (1.9M tonnes), with a combined 38% share of global consumption. These countries were followed by Argentina, the U.S., Brazil, Turkey, Spain, Italy, and Iran, which together accounted for a further 35%.

From 2007 to 2019, the biggest increases were in Spain, while lemon and lime consumption for the other global leaders experienced more modest paces of growth.

In value terms, the largest lemon and lime markets worldwide were China ($2.2B), India ($1.8B), and Argentina ($1.5B), with a combined 33% share of the global market. These countries were followed by Mexico, Brazil, the U.S., Italy, Spain, Turkey, and Iran, which together accounted for a further 34%.

In 2019, the highest levels of lemon and lime per capita consumption were registered in Argentina (40 kg per person), followed by Mexico (14 kg per person), Spain (10 kg per person) and Turkey (8.25 kg per person), while the world average per capita consumption of lemon and lime was estimated at 2.54 kg per person.

Market Forecast 2019-2030

Driven by increasing demand for lemon and lime worldwide, the market is expected to continue an upward consumption trend over the next decade. Market performance is forecast to retain its current trend pattern, expanding with an anticipated CAGR of +1.2% for the period from 2019 to 2030, which is projected to bring the market volume to 22M tonnes by the end of 2030.

Production

For the seventh consecutive year, the global market recorded growth in the production of lemons and limes, which increased by 2.2% to 20M tonnes in 2019. The total output volume increased at an average annual rate of +1.6% over the period from 2007 to 2019; the trend pattern remained relatively stable, with somewhat noticeable fluctuations being observed throughout the analyzed period. The most prominent rate of growth was recorded in 2018 with an increase of 11% y-o-y. Global production peaked in 2019 and is likely to see gradual growth in the immediate term. The generally positive trend in terms output was largely conditioned by the slight growth of the harvested area and a relatively flat trend pattern in yield figures.

Production by Country

The countries with the highest volumes of lemon and lime production in 2019 were India (3.2M tonnes), Mexico (2.6M tonnes) and China (2.4M tonnes), together comprising 42% of global production. Argentina, Brazil, Spain, Turkey, the U.S., South Africa, Iran, Italy and Egypt lagged somewhat behind, together accounting for a further 43%.

From 2007 to 2019, the biggest increases were in South Africa, while lemon and lime production for the other global leaders experienced more modest paces of growth.

Harvested Area

In 2019, the total area harvested in terms of lemons and limes production worldwide reduced to 1.2M ha, dropping by -6.5% in 2018. The harvested area increased at an average annual rate of +1.5% over the period from 2007 to 2019; the trend pattern remained consistent, with only minor fluctuations being recorded in certain years. The most prominent rate of growth was recorded in 2018 when the harvested area increased by 16% against the previous year. As a result, the harvested area reached the peak level of 1.3M ha, and then reduced in the following year.

Yield

The global average lemon and lime yield expanded markedly to 17 tonnes per ha in 2019, growing by 9.3% against the previous year’s figure. Overall, the yield continues to indicate a relatively flat trend pattern. Over the period under review, the average lemon and lime yield attained the peak level in 2019 and is likely to see gradual growth in years to come.

Imports

For the fifth year in a row, the global market recorded growth in purchases abroad of lemons and limes, which increased by 3.1% to 3.7M tonnes in 2019. Overall, total imports indicated a moderate expansion from 2007 to 2019: its volume increased at an average annual rate of +4.3% over the last twelve years. The trend pattern, however, indicated some noticeable fluctuations being recorded throughout the analyzed period. The pace of growth was the most pronounced in 2015 when imports increased by 12% y-o-y. Over the period under review, global imports reached the peak figure in 2019 and are likely to continue growing in years to come. In value terms, lemon and lime imports declined to $3.8B (IndexBox estimates) in 2019.

Imports by Country

In 2019, the U.S. (793K tonnes), distantly followed by the Netherlands (247K tonnes), Russia (224K tonnes), Germany (212K tonnes), France (198K tonnes) and Iraq (168K tonnes) represented the largest importers of lemons and limes, together committing 50% of total imports. The UK (161K tonnes), Italy (154K tonnes), Saudi Arabia (131K tonnes), Canada (127K tonnes), Poland (125K tonnes) and the United Arab Emirates (80K tonnes) followed a long way behind the leaders.

Imports into the U.S. increased at an average annual rate of +5.2% from 2007 to 2019. At the same time, Iraq (+9.8%), Canada (+6.6%), the Netherlands (+6.5%), Saudi Arabia (+6.4%), the United Arab Emirates (+5.3%), Italy (+4.5%), the UK (+4.3%), France (+4.2%), Germany (+3.5%) and Poland (+1.9%) displayed positive paces of growth. Moreover, Iraq emerged as the fastest-growing importer imported in the world, with a CAGR of +9.8% from 2007-2019. Russia experienced a relatively flat trend pattern.

In value terms, the U.S. ($692M) constitutes the largest market for imported lemons and limes worldwide, comprising 18% of global imports. The second position in the ranking was occupied by Germany ($322M), with a 8.5% share of global imports. It was followed by France, with a 7.7% share.

Import Prices by Country

In 2019, the average lemon and lime import price amounted to $1,022 per tonne, with a decrease of -5.2% against the previous year. Over the last twelve-year period, it increased at an average annual rate of +2.1%. The pace of growth appeared the most rapid in 2010 an increase of 19% against the previous year. Over the period under review, average import prices hit record highs at $1,144 per tonne in 2016; however, from 2017 to 2019, import prices stood at a somewhat lower figure.

There were significant differences in the average prices amongst the major importing countries. In 2019, the country with the highest price was Germany ($1,521 per tonne), while Iraq ($446 per tonne) was amongst the lowest.

From 2007 to 2019, the most notable rate of growth in terms of prices was attained by the United Arab Emirates, while the other global leaders experienced more modest paces of growth.

Source: IndexBox AI Platform