Orange production in Brazil
Brazil is also the world's largest exporter of orange juice. According to the United States Department of Agriculture, the country shipped 1.2 million metric tons of orange juice in 2012—twelve times more than the United States, the world's second-largest exporter.
In 2013, it was reported that many Brazilian orange-growers were giving up on oranges and other citrus fruits and turning instead to sugarcane and other crops. Brazilian orange-growers have been pushed out of the market because of a decline in domestic prices of oranges, as well as rising costs of labor and chemicals. One reason for low prices in 2013 was consecutive bumper crops in Brazil during the two previous growing seasons, which increased global supply and led to a 31% decline in world market prices.
Three Brazilian companies dominate the orange-juice export market: Citrosuco SA Agroindústria, Sucocitrico Cutrale Ltda, and Louis Dreyfus Commodities Brasil SA. Together, these companies account for about 40% of Brazilian orange production and 98% of Brazilian juice exports. The domination of the market by these three companies is also blamed for the low orange prices.
According to the Center for Advanced Studies on Applied Economics at the University of São Paulo, the average price per box of oranges offered by industrial buyers in Brazil fell almost 60% from January 2007 to May 2013, from 15.46 Brazilian reals to 6.50 Brazilian reals.
- Jeffrey T. Lewis, In Brazil, Farmers Ripping Out Orange Trees, Wall Street Journal (June 13, 2013).
- Foreign Agriculture Report: Citrus Industry of Chile, U.S. Foreign Agricultural Service (1958), p. 3.
- FAOSTAT database search.
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