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The Invasion of Ukraine Leaves Sour Taste for South Africa’s Citrus Farmers

South Africa is the world’s second largest citrus exporter and farmers are scrambling to find other markets before the fruit spoils. South Africa normally sends about 10% of its annual two billion dollars in citrus exports to Russia. That’s now on hold because of sanctions imposed after Russia launched its invasion of Ukraine. Following two years of export disruptions caused by the coronavirus pandemic, unrest, and cyberattacks on the ports, the loss of the Russian market is another blow to South African farmers. Justin Chadwick is the CEO of the Citrus Growers’ Association of Southern Africa says, “Our markets are very susceptible to oversupply. And because the product obviously can’t be stored for any length of time, if there’s too much in the market, it either has to be seriously discounted to move the fruit quicker or it just it just wastes eventually,” he said.