The question on everyones mind is, “What is Turkey going to supply this year?” Growers were not disappointed when they received record setting prices due to the supply shortage.
In the 2014 Turkish Crop Report, experts found that if trees were planted over 300 meters in elevation, they produced nothing because frost damage. This is where 62% of the Turkish crop is located. Not only were hazelnuts affected but apricots, cherries, almonds, walnuts, and plum trees, causing food prices to increase.
This year, Turkish hazelnuts couldn’t repair themselves in time before they started blooming, eight weeks before Oregon. There was light frost in early April, but not a severe one. The President of the Turkish Agriculture Association suggested they start developing trees that can withstand longer periods of freezing temperatures to avoid frost damage.
To avoid facing a deficit again, Ferrero, Turkey’s largest customer, has continued to invest in hazelnut operations in other countries so they are not dependent on one country.
This year, there will be no carry in from last years' crop, meaning that there will be no crop left over from the previous year in Turkey and possibly in Oregon. It was an unusual year for hazelnuts, but that is good news for growers, who will likely receive high prices once again.