Between October and December 2013, the first three months of the 2013/14 crop year, trade in olive oil and olive pomace oil decreased by 25 pc in Australia, 20 pc in China, 10 pc each in Brazil and the United States, 9 pc in Russia, 8 pc in Canada and 1 pc in Japan.
The EU data for December 2013 were not available at the time of publication, but the figures for the first two months of the season report a drop of 4 pc in intra-EU acquisitions and of 14 pc in extra-EU imports compared with the same period of the previous crop year.
Comparison of the figures for December 2013 and 2012 would appear to show that imports are recovering, except in China, Japan and the United States where they have gone down.
The immediate interpretation is that available supplies in the new season were not at hand for export in the first two months of 2013/14 (October and November 2013), particularly in Spain because of its low level of production in 2012/13, but this does not seem valid for the December figures for China, Japan (to a limited extent) and the United States (where the November figures were better), which are three key importer countries.
This situation is worrisome and will require close scrutiny of the figures for January 2014.World Market for Olive Oil and Table Olives at the start of the 2013/14 crop year,