China Nut Report: Production and Import and Export Forecast for 2021/22 season

Issuing time:2021-11-23 14:20


October 9, 2021 Jing Zang

The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) recently released a report detailing the production and import and export of nuts in China in 2020/22. Among them, Pecan output is expected to double, walnut output and last season basically flat. Different varieties of nuts start and end at slightly different times. The following is the analysis of international fruit and vegetable reports.


China is the world's largest producer of walnuts, accounting for nearly half of the world's output. In 2021-22 season (September 2021 to August 2022), walnut production (with shell) of commercial grade in China is expected to reach 1.1 million tons, basically the same as last season, while the actual walnut production in China is far greater than the total amount of annual inflow into the commercial end. Total walnut production in China is expected to continue to grow in the coming years as newly planted seedlings continue to go into production.

There are more than 50 varieties of walnuts in China, most of them are indigenous. There is no lack of paper walnut and other large, high meat rate varieties, but the overall lack of varieties can compete with Chandler, Hartley and other excellent imported varieties.

China's imports of walnuts will continue to fall as its own production increases. In terms of exports, China's exports of both shelled and without shelled walnuts are expected to see a slight increase in 2020/22, mainly to Central and West Asia.


In the 2021-22 season (August 2021 to July 2022), China's output of Almonds (without shelled) is expected to be about 42,000 tons, down about 7% year-on-year. The planted area is estimated to be about 945,000 mu, basically the same as last season. Shache county in Xinjiang produces 95 percent of China's almonds wood. However, because of insufficient agricultural investment, backward management means and other reasons, the production efficiency of almonds is low.

In fact, Shache county's almonds wooden are using all by the local market digestion, not even out of Xinjiang. The rest of China remains highly dependent on imports for almonds wood consumption. China's almonds wood imports are expected to grow in 2020/22, with the US being the largest supplier of the product to China, followed by Australia.


China's domestic production of pistachios is negligible. A small scale trial planting was carried out in Xinjiang before, but the results were not satisfactory due to climate reasons and planting technology shortcomings.

It is estimated that about 20 per cent of the world's pistachio output flows into the Chinese market each year. In 2020/21, Iran was the largest supplier of pistachios to China, accounting for 65 percent of imports. In 2021-22 season (September 2021 to August 2022), China's import of pistachios will decrease due to the decrease in Iran's production.

Macadamia nuts

In the 2021-22 season (September 2021 to August 2022), China's output of shelled macadamia nuts is expected to reach 32,000 tons, while shelled macadamia nuts will reach 9,600 tons, up 5% and 9% year-on-year respectively.

As the fastest growing nut category in China, macadamia nut has been planted on 465,000 mu of land nationwide, mainly in the hilly areas of Yunnan Province and the plain areas of Guangxi Province. On current trends, China may be self-sufficient in this category of nuts in the near future, or even able to export the products.

In terms of varieties, the Macadamia nuts fruit varieties planted in China also have shortcomings such as low yield and unstable quality.

Hazel son

Commercial planting of hazelnuts has grown rapidly in China in recent years. In 2021-22 season (September 2021 to August 2022), the commercial planting area of this category is expected to reach 1.68 million mu, mainly concentrated in Liaoning, Jilin, Heilongjiang, Shandong, Inner Mongolia, Hebei and other provinces, and the total output is expected to be 35,000 tons (with shell). Meanwhile, the production of wild hazelnuts in China is also not to be underestimated. The 2021-22 season is expected to reach 33,000 tons, with an overall scale of 1.32 million mu, mainly concentrated in Liaoning Province.

American hazelnuts have long been popular with Chinese consumers because of their size, and their exports to China (in the shell) have been stable for a long time. Shelled hazelnuts are mainly imported from Turkey and used in food processing.


In the 2021-22 season (September 2021 to August 2022), China's output of pecan fruit is expected to reach 4,000 tons, doubling from the previous season. Production will continue to grow as more seedlings come into production in the future.

Currently, the total planting area nationwide is estimated to be about 1.2 million mu, mainly in Anhui, Yunnan and Jiangsu provinces. The State Council issued a policy in November 2020 banning the use of arable land for non-food crops, which may mean that there will be no big expansion of pecan cultivation.

Imports are expected to rise in 20201/22 due to a recovery in pecan production in the US, the largest supplier to China.

Image credit: Pixabay

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