Demand is up this season for the Egyptian garlic. Due to high shipping costs from China to the Middle East, the Egyptians claim they can offer a better price, giving them a good position in the market. Meanwhile, the Egyptian onion season is also starting.
Ralph Nakal, of Egyptian produce exporter Tomna, states that it hasn’t been the easiest garlic season, with what’s going on in the world right now: “The Egyptian fresh garlic season has been very unstable this year during the months of February and March, because of the war and logistical problems. However, we have continued to supply our existing customers, so it’s not all bad. Demand for dry garlic is picking up these days, as we are closing programs in various markets. This year's harvest is of very good quality, so that helps a lot with demand.”
Demand for Egyptian products has been at a high level this year, Nakhal explains. “This year, we’re seeing higher demand in the Middle-Eastern markets. This is due to our position compared to Chinese garlic. We can offer better prices than the Chinese because there’s a high shipping cost from China to these markets. We expect demand to increase further during the months of May and June. We expect to open new markets like Central America and Africa, on top of supplying our existing markets.”
Although the garlic season is still going, Tomna will also have to focus on their onion season from now on: “We’re now starting our onion season as well, and the first impression seems to be that there is solid demand for yellow and red varieties this year. We’ve not noticed any specific increase in demand in the Asian markets, but demand there is similar to last year. When it comes to volumes, there will be lower quantities than we had last year. Since there is only a limited supply of good quality onions, we expect prices to increase in the coming months. Although acreage for onions has decreased compared to a year ago, the quality is very good this year.” Nakhal concludes.