Australian kernel sales hold steady amid upturn in new products with macadamias
The 2022 global crop is forecast to finish at 300,213 tonnes @ 3.5% moisture, up from 241,420 tonnes in 2021. All origins except Hawaii are reporting an increase in production compared to last year, with the largest increases coming from South Africa and China. The Macadamias South Africa (SAMAC) forecast for 2022 production is 70,139 tonnes @ 3.5% moisture, up from 53,320 tonnes in 2021. China is forecasting a crop of 62,500 tonnes @ 3.5% moisture for 2022, however many reports suggest a result up to 20% below this.
Overall global demand for macadamias continued to rise in the 12 months to September 2022. Global imports to the top 5 kernel markets were up 16% (24,349 tonnes to 28,160 tonnes). All markets experienced growth, except for the domestic market.
Global in-shell imports to China/ Hong Kong for the period MAT October 2021 to September 2022 were reported at 40,519 tonnes (+3% on prior period). The two major importers of in-shell into China/Hong Kong remain South Africa and Australia. However Australian imports dropped back to 10,577 tonnes (26% share of total nut-in-shell imports) and South Africa hit a high of 18,041 tonnes (45% share).
Total Australian kernel sales were steady in the 12 months to September 2022. Domestic sales declined but remained the largest kernel market with 29% share of total kernel sales. Japan is the major export market for kernel and was up 12% compared to the prior MAT period. China continues to record strong growth in the kernel market, up 53%, overtaking kernel sales to the US market for the first time.
In-shell sales were down 14% in the 12 months to September 2022, after a record year in the same period last year.
The pandemic caused a general slowdown in product development in recent years as organisations were impacted by plant shutdowns, R&D staff working remotely, supply chain challenges, and financial or other business uncertainties. The focus was on ensuring availability of existing, popular products, which impacted the mix of launch types. In the 12 months to September 2022, although total launches were up 6%, “true” new product launches were the lowest since 2017–18, with 42% of launches coming from extensions and improvements to existing product ranges and 26% from new packaging formats.
The snacking, chocolate confectionery, and bakery categories continued to represent the majority of new product development using macadamias as an ingredient at 46%, 15% and 14% respectively.