The American Pecan Growers Council released the December 2019 Pecan Position Report giving insight into how the pecan season is shaping up for producers. The report covers the most of the supply chain of pecans from the growers to the end users, allowing growers and buyers to gauge the pecan market with supply and demand indicators.
The first quarter of the season shaped up nicely with growth in the demand category seeing shipments surge to a 15% increase, but the shipments have fallen off their highs to a decline of 4.1% for the season.
The growers council reported a total of 130,731,089* lbs of pecans shipped up to December of 2018 while this year packers have only shipped 125,428,686* lbs for the season. The fiscal year begins in September and ends in August each year.
Delving a little further into the numbers we see that Shelled meat shipments are down 6.6% while in-shell pecan shipments actually jumped 13.1% from 16 to 18 million pounds. Still a dismal number as China continues to buy most of their product from Mexico as the US China trade dispute continues with extremely high tariffs on American Pecans.
Pecan inventory is down over 15% with in-shell pecans dropping nearly 30% from the same time last year. This could be due to heavier demand in the first quarter coupled with the significant loss from last year’s weather events; but maybe not, since the numbers only report handler inventory, this could be growers holding more crop as market prices on the farm have been in slump over the last few months.
While handler inventory is down, commitments to ship are up 16%, with the export market taking the enormous lead with an increase of 62%. Domestic commitments are up 5% for the year, showing good signs for future demand for pecans. Shelled pecan commitments for the domestic market still make up the largest portion of the increase with 51.3% increase over the prior year.
While pecan shipments are down slightly for the season, the commitments to ship are up 16%* for the season showing good signs of strong demand. Even in the face of the trade war American Pecan Growers have been able to weather the storm.
*C2i – Converted to in-shell