November 22, 2023
First, our team here at ofi wishes everyone a Happy Holiday!
The almond harvest has officially concluded. With such a late crop, hullers/shellers will continue operating until Christmas. Late varieties have been hard to come by as the previous crop sold out early this year. Each day will improve as we move through crop receipts and work on processing as fast as possible. Crop receipts now stand at 1.33 billion pounds received to date, compared to 1.66 billion pounds last year, leading to less product that California is able to sell and ship in the near term.
The Almond Board of CA released the October Position Report on November 10, 2023. Shipments for October were robust at 247 million pounds, marking the third-strongest October in almond history. This is +15.3% over last October, bringing total shipments year to date +7.25% ahead of last year. Despite the late crop, the industry’s carry-out has served it well. We now rely on the new crop to meet future demand.
October shipments were driven by exports, with 190 million pounds shipped, a +27.7% increase over last October. Export shipments year-to-date are +10.5% ahead of last year. Meanwhile, domestic sales fell by -13% to 57 million pounds, bringing domestic shipments flat versus last year at this time.
New sales for October remained healthy with 251 million pounds sold versus 244 million pounds sold last year, a 3% increase. While new crop offers remain for close-by shipments, buyers are content with hand-to-mouth purchases, keeping packers busy through the holiday season. Total commitments for the new crop stand at 677.5 million pounds, just off -2.5% from last year’s 694.8 million. Export commitments are trending up +11.2%, 405.7 million pounds versus last year’s 364.8 million. Domestic commitments are off -17.65%, 271.7 million pounds versus 329.9 million pounds a year ago. At the end of October, uncommitted inventory was 753.3 million pounds, down -33.6% versus 1.13 billion pounds last year. As receipts continue to arrive, this will soon shift up.
Upcoming Industry Milestones
- Harvest Period: Harvest has concluded and the hullers/shellers will be working overtime if they are to finish by the end of December.
- Position Report: December 12, 2023
Almond Market Insights - Week 47 Update
- October sales were very strong with 251 million pounds sold. This should translate into continued strong shipments for the next few months. November shipments are expected to mirror October.
- With crop receipts down, the market has continued to firm as specific sizes and varieties are currently harder to find. Packers are content with their current sales and shipments they have booked.
- Pricing remains attractive for buyers, and the combination of this firmness along with strong shipments signals confidence in the almond market.
- Domestic sales and consumption continue to be disappointing. With inflationary pressures continuing on most goods, consumers are spreading their paychecks among staple items. With the U.S. being the largest market for almonds, it will be critical in the months ahead to see positive growth.
- Crop receipts are increasing as the industry went from -36% behind in September to -19% for October, and it will continue to catch up as huller/shellers move through the crop. It is still too early to finalize the 2023 crop size.
- The market continues to be quiet, and while offers may be hard to find, there has not been a great deal of demand either. The holiday selling season is behind us domestically, and China is quickly closing for Chinese New Year.