Mexican Citrus: 2022-2023 Crop Overview and Orange Juice Outlook

BMT Foods attended the International Citrus and Beverage Conference (ICBC) in Clearwater, FL last month. The event was a chance for citrus processors from all of the citrus growing regions to be present and discuss the latest developments in regional citrus crop trends. Among the different citrus growing regions, Mexico is a clear leader and key player in worldwide citrus growing and production. Today, we explore Mexico’s citrus crop and why it is vital to the world.

Mexico is a leader in citrus production.

As the world’s third-largest citrus producer, Mexico produces around 8% of total citrus production globally. During the 2021-2022 season, Mexico was responsible for 8.3 million tons of citrus fruit, only behind China and Brazil (with 39.8 and 16.9 million tons, respectively.) Mexico produced approximately 4.3 million tons of oranges, 3.2 million tons of lemons and limes, 0.5 million tons of grapefruits, and 0.3 million tons of tangerines over the last year.

Mexican citrus fruit helps drive the world’s annual Orange Juice Concentrate production, too. In 2021, Mexico was the third-largest orange processor in the world, producing 10% of the world’s total processed volume. That’s up significantly from ten years prior, in 2011, when Mexico was only responsible for 4% of the world’s total processed orange juice concentrate.

Valencia Oranges are the crown jewel of Mexican citrus production.

Delicious Valencia Oranges are Mexico’s leading citrus crop. With a production season from June through December, Valencia Oranges saw three million tons produced this year, with two million tons being processed and one million tons being earmarked for the fresh fruit market.

Unique to Mexico, Valencia Oranges and are known for their sweet taste and juiciness. These oranges are a good source of vitamin C, potassium, and fiber. They also contain a flavonoid called hesperidin, which has been shown to have numerous health benefits including reducing inflammation and lowering cholesterol levels.

What can we expect for Mexican Orange Juice Concentrate production this year?

This year, uncertain weather and potential HLB disease conditions may drive up the cost of Mexican oranges, which in turn may affect future Orange Juice Concentrate (FCOJ) prices. There is the potential to see fruit costs up as much as 93% higher than in the 2019 growing season. For example, in Veracruz, drought conditions are likely to reduce the final orange crop yield. Due to this uncertainty, it is expected that the final crop available for processing into Orange Juice Concentrate will be significantly smaller than last year, with as much as a 46% decrease.

BMT Foods offers both Orange Juice Concentrate, NFC Orange Juice as well as Orange Oil produced from the Mexican citrus market as well as other citrus producing regions of the world. We will keep you posted on further citrus crop updates and developments as the growing season continues. Reach out to us today to learn more.