Fresh Fruit

South African Fresh Fruit

Climate – South African Fresh Fruit Exporters

South Africa’s climate varies because of the variation in latitude and height above sea level, together with the effect of ocean currents along the coast.
In the south-western corner of the country a winter rainfall is experienced, along the southern coastal belt there is all-year-round rainfall and throughout the remainder of the country there is a summer rainfall. South Africa ‘s rainfall is extremely irregular and varied, from west to east it increases from below 125 mm annually along the arid west coast to more than 1000 mm a year on the east coast. 10% of South Africa receives an annual precipitation of more than 750 mm and consequently, horticultural crops are mostly produced under irrigation.
In summer the temperature is hot  with many cloudless days and during winter you find few areas that are frost-free. In conjunction with soil factors, temperature plays an important part in the natural demarcation of areas suitable for the cultivation of different horticultural crops.


The country covers an area of 122.3 million ha of which 14 million ha is under cultivation. South Africa consists largely of an inland plateau, with an average height of 1200 m above sea level. Separating the plateau is escarpment from a narrow coastal belt, varying from 60 km in the west to more than 220 km in the east. The few perennial rivers in South Africa can be found in the south and on the eastern slopes of the plateau. The flow of these rivers are largely dependant and determined by rainfall, as there are no lakes or perennial snow fields.

The South African deciduous fruit industry is highly developed and geared for the export of a large percentage of its production. Apples rank first, followed by table grapes, pears, peaches, plums and apricots in the South African fresh fruit exports. Smaller crops such as kiwi fruit, almonds, strawberries and olives are cultivated. strawberries and olives are cultivated.

Other major South African horticultural industries include citrus, pineapples, bananas, avocados, mangos, litchis, papayas, granadillas, guavas, macadamia nuts, pecan nuts, coffee, tea and ginger.

Pineapples, bananas and avocados are the three most important fruits but citrus is the largest in this group. There has been a rapid growth rate in recent years of many tropical fruits, such as avocado and mango.

South African Fresh Fruit Production Areas for Exports:

South-western and southern regions of the Western Cape fresh fruit exporters:

Low lying areas of Mpumalanga and the Northern Province fresh fruit exports:

Lower reaches of the river valleys of the Eastern Cape fresh fruit exporters

Upington Area