The sweet news for South Africa’s lemon growers is a new trade protocol with China which could see lemon exports to China increasing to 25 000 tons by 2024, and creating 800 jobs.
This would enable South Africa’s rapidly expanding lemon industry to overtake Argentina and Chile, which have dominated southern hemisphere lemon exports to China.
The sour is that the United States is seeking anti-dumping duties on South African lemon juice. In addition to juice exports to the US, the fresh lemon market there is reportedly a mainstay for South African producers.
The application has been brought by an American citrus juice maker, which has applied to the US International Trade Commission (ITC) for anti-dumping duties on lemon juice from South Africa and Brazil. The South African citrus industry is opposing the application.