Hazelnut crop may be most successful yet
With demand up due to shortage in Turkey, Oregon growers may see increased revenues
Hazelnut crop estimates were released last week in Oregon, and while numbers wont hit last years above-average yield of 47,000 tons, farmers should be pleased with the outcome.
Itll probably be the best year ever for growers theyve ever seen, so theyre pretty happy about that, said Tim Newkirk, Willamette Hazelnuts Growers general manager.
Not the best year for production, with estimates resting around 36,000 tons, but in revenue. A frost in Turkey damaged the hazelnut crop in the country which delivers 70 percent of the worlds supply. This has buyers looking elsewhere for product, including Oregon, which is one of the only United States producers.
Basically theres just a lot of shortage on the global market with Turkey being hit hard and thats put a lot of pressure on every other market, Newkirk said. What that does is put people who have to have hazelnuts to continue their production reaching out to a lot of people. When demand goes up and supply is limited, the price goes up.
He said prices could easily increase 20 to 25 percent as a result.
It really depends on what Turkey ends up producing overall and what they can supply and what they cant supply and what those markets can bare as far as price goes, he said.
The shortage may even impact Oregons sales in China, which typically is one of Oregons top buyers.
China has been in the past our largest market but this year it may change if the numbers dont work for them, Newkirk said. Wed love to supply everybody and make everybody happy.
He said it will still be four to six months before growers know how the market will fare.
The market is so fickle as far as the buyer goes, he said. Buyers dont want to commit to the high prices if they might come down, so they always wait to the last minute to commit and get those orders in. Thats what were seeing right now.