Global hazelnut production trends show a steady increase over the last 25 year period, between 1995 to 2018 global production rose by 27%.
World hazelnut production shows fluctuations depending on the climatic conditions from year to year. A prime example of weather effects can be seen in 2014 when global Hazelnut prices increased by 50% due to frost in Turkey, global production decreased by 22%.
The main producing countries include Turkey, Italy, Spain, the USA and Greece. Although hazelnuts are also produced in the Former Soviet Union, Iran, Romania and France.
Turkey dominates global production with typically +60% of the market. However, this is extensive (hill sides, old orchards, heavy use of family labour) and is declining slowly over an extended period of time. This is of course a cause for concern, when the region is hit by harsh weather it has a major impact to global supply patterns. Processors are therefore seeking to broaden and diversify the production base removing emphasis on Turkish hazelnuts.
Brown & Co International have recently worked with hazelnut processors to develop and model potential investment projects in central and southern Europe. With increasing concern around supply risk relating to Turkey, processors are now looking towards Europe, particularly southern Europe, where climatic conditions are suitable and production can be intensive and commercialised.
There are profitable opportunities to grow, on contract a high value product, that may have a competitive advantage in terms of costs of production which will facilitate production displacement away from Turkey. Regions in central and southern Europe with appropriate soil types, climate, market access and water availability (at reasonable cost) are considered able to take advantage of this opportunity going forwards.