“As sales to Belarus are banned, exporters look to send apples to Egypt”

The effects of the Belarus embargo are being felt by Polish apple exporters. Contracts have been stopped and traders are looking towards the Egyptian market to sell their apples. Simultaneously, it’s still unclear to a lot of people which new Polish laws and regulations are going into effect in February, so there are a lot of uncertainties for the season.

Polish apple exporters have had some time to take a breath, as the holidays slowed things down a bit. According to Jakub Krawczyk, export manager for Appolonia, this is typical for the time of the year: “After Christmas and up to January the 10th, lots of companies were not working in the highest gear and some of them were even closed for this period. This is due to end-of-year procedures like stocktaking and also people took some holidays. So it was a very calm period of the season. Usually this period is the same year after year.”

Demand for apples has been little bit low the past week, but Krawczyk hopes this will change in the coming days. “We feel the negative effects of the Belarus embargo; many good contracts have been stopped and it’s not good for the entire industry. It’s not only us as sellers that are unhappy with the situation. Partners in Belarus are also complaining, because they have major difficulties purchasing large volumes of good quality apples. They say the biggest crisis for them will come in the beginning of the spring, when all other suppliers will not have any more fruits for them,” Krawczyk explains.

The embargo means apple exporters have to look towards different markets. “Because sales to Belarus are banned right now, everybody is looking to send apples to Egypt. However, there were some big delays in container deliveries, so the situation in the Egyptian market right now is quite hard.”

Although demand is slow right now, the holiday of love might help increase sales for apple exporters: “Valentine’s Day is coming up and this is the moment when engraved apples like “I love you” etc. are mostly wanted. It’s a good time for growers who have these kind of products in their offering. Personally I think it is a perfect gift for Valentine’s Day,” Krawczyk states.

On the upside, the Polish currency is doing a lot better than it was a couple of months ago: “The Polish currency was rather weak in the third quarter of the previous year, but right now the situation is a little bit more stable. Which is great, as we’ve seen some bigger sales in the last weeks of 2021.”

Krawczyk states it’s worrying that new regulations, which will come into effect on February the 1st, are still not completely clear for everybody involved. “All Polish logistic companies are waiting for Governmental decisions, as some new regulations will be going in effect from the 1st of February. The problem is that nobody knows which regulations will be accepted and what the effect on final transport costs will be. The consensus right now is that it will cause some increase in the total freight price. However, as I stated, the new laws and regulations are not completely clear to everyone, there are still lots of uncertainties and thus there is slight chaos and lots of unknowns right now.”

However, Krawczyk is focused on finishing the season with success and is confident they’ll be able to have a satisfying season, so long as nobody goes into panic mode and starts selling at rock bottom prices: “We still have very good volumes of apples. After opening chambers we see good pressure in the produce, so we should have enough products for our customers, which makes the outlook of the season optimistic. We just need to keep calm and carry on with our sales. We hope that if the demand or sales start slowing down, that both exporters and importers will not go into a panic and dump the prices to the minimum,” he concludes.

For more information:
Jakub Krawczyk
Tel: +48 785 342 930
Email: jakub.krawczyk@appolonia.pl 

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