American shipments January 2024

Next, we are going to analyze the latest report published concerning the American shipments for the past month of JANUARY 2024.


The figure of shipments is 235.92 Mlbs (+2.7%), being the record figure for January in history and surpassing last year's record of 229.66 Mlbs.


Regarding sales for the month we have a figure of 235.91 Mlbs, being last year's figure of 350.11 Mlbs, which means a -32.62% of sales in the month of January. It is true that if we compare it with last year it would not be entirely fair. Last year's January sales figure, mentioned above, was the highest sales figure in one month in history. Therefore, this year, in the comparison, it was difficult to beat that figure. Still, when compared to other years, it was quite good. In fact, it would be the second highest January sales figure in history, which is not bad at all.


Export shipments were 173.03 Mlbs (+6.1%), also a record. Domestic shipments were 62.89 Mlbs (-5.4%).


Regarding the crop, we have an inflow of 2,391.22 Mlbs (-3.39%). However, in the total harvest, adding carryin (800.29 Mlbs (-4.36%)), we have 3,143.69 Mlbs (-3.64%). Last year, from January to the end of harvest, 96.09 Mlbs came in. Therefore, if something similar happens this year, we will end up with an entry of 2,487.31 Mlbs (almost 2.5 Blbs).


Regarding the sold and not shipped we have a total of 637.42 Mlbs (-24.13%). Shelled would be, with respect to domestic, 262.00 Mlbs (-24.90%) and export 375.43 Mlbs (-23.59%).


With this situation, a total of 1,125.59 Mlbs (-2.17%) would remain unsold (inventory).


With this data we can see that we have sold 2,018.10 Mlbs in general, -4.44% compared to last year when we had sold 2,111.77 Mlbs. This means that we have sold a little less than what we have this year of total available crop (-3.64%). That is to say, with this data, right now, we would have approximately 0.80% less sold than last year, if we had the same almonds available. Assuming that finally the crop input would remain at 2.49 Blbs which would make a total available of 3.24 Blbs, we would have sold approximately 80% of the crop input and approximately 60% of the total available.


Regarding the destination of shipments, countries such as Canada, South Korea, India, France, the Netherlands (strong increase), the United Kingdom and the United Arab Emirates (very strong increase) stand out positively. On the negative side, there are important countries such as China, Japan (slightly less but very similar), Germany (slightly less but very similar), Italy, Saudi Arabia, Turkey (strong decrease) and Morocco. In Spain the situation has been negative, with 16.91 Mlbs this month compared to 19.44 Mlbs the previous year (-13.01%). In total so far this year we have a figure of 94.54 Mlbs this year against 97.89 Mlbs last year (-3.42%). In Europe this month 61.29 Mlbs for 58.82 Mlbs last year (+4.20%). In total so far this year we have a figure of 322.20 Mlbs this year for 298.55 Mlbs last year (+7.92%).


As can be seen from the above-mentioned data, we are facing a bullish situation, with some not so bullish points to comment. If we look at shipments, the figures are once again spectacular and surpassing last year's January, which was already a record, is quite commendable. In fact, with the exception of August, all other months have been positive shipments. As of today we have +8.58% more shipments than last year at this time. If this continues, the carryin, which is surplus, will be cut and it looks very likely that this will be the case. We remind you that the carryin is the almond that has not been shipped at the end of the harvest and remains for the next harvest. We repeat, that it has not been shipped, not that it has not been sold. It is possible to have, at one extreme, a very high surplus (not shipped) and have it all sold.


In fact, if this continues with these numbers, the carryin would be around 400 Mlbs, values already similar to what they were a few years ago. Therefore, we are managing to lower the possible surplus with some very good shipments so far, which is good news for not having the high surplus of the last years, especially if we have a good harvest to come


January sales, as we have mentioned, despite being negative, is not a bearish figure either. We are comparing it with a historical January 2023. Sales have been good, the second best in the month of January, which is commendable because the whole month of January has gone, especially in Europe with the sale of Std 5%, with the brakes on and with a progressive increase in the price of this product. We understand from these data that the bulk of sales have gone to all types of products other than Std 5% where the price has risen to a much lesser extent and has been more receptive to sales.


However, there are not so bullish data that we must take into account. For example, the crop inflow. Some months ago there was speculation of very low entries of 2.20 Blbs and finally it seems that it is going to levels of 2.50 Blbs, even so, lower than the 2.60 Blbs of the objective estimate. On the other hand, we have the sold not shipped, the forward sales. We have a devastating figure of -24.13%. This means that the market is acting in the short term and not so much in the long term. Perhaps it is that the buyer does not trust in the future, expecting the possibility of a good harvest to come and is buying what he needs, or it is the seller who does not trust and does not want to sell for the long term. Whatever it is, it leads us to think, with these data, that there may be a smaller surplus, but it is still less sold than last year, which was much larger.


During the month of January up to the present, which we are already in mid-February, as a result of the last shipments in December, the market has been progressively rising, especially in the Std 5%. In fact, we have gone from levels of $1.60/1.65/lb to levels of $1.85/1.87/lb. The supply has significantly reduced its offer in this product, perhaps causing it to sacrifice operations at the cost of pushing up the price, and has focused on the other products, which have also risen, but in a testimonial way compared to the Std 5%. What has been done is to reduce the wide margin between the Std 5% and the rest.


After the publication of the present shipments, the market has continued without any apparent change and with the same dynamics, in spite of having good data as we have mentioned. Perhaps the seller prefers to be cautious and, in view of the possibility of a good harvest to come, whose forecast for the next 15 days is favorable, he prefers to watch the market as it evolves.


As for the Spanish almond, January has been a month of few operations and like the American almond, a rising price but in this case in all its products. The rise has been stronger in the most economical products, piece, b/12, owner commune without size guarantee... the difference between small, medium and large sizes is being reduced, similar to the Std 5% with the rest in the American case.


All within a framework of very few operations and an almost non-existent supply, it has been observed that products such as the b/12 goes from levels of 3.20/3.30 €/kg to 3.80/3.90 €/kg. The proprietary commune with no size guarantee went from €3.60/kg to around €4/kg. A 12/14 single variety goes from 3.80 €/kg to levels of 4.10/4.15 €/kg or a s/14 from 4.70 €/kg to 4.80 €/kg. We observe how the increase is more accentuated in cheaper products and less in the more expensive ones.


There has also been, and it was not difficult given the low supply, a greater demand, perhaps attracted by the lower prices than the American and the lack of supply of Std 5%, which has helped the already mentioned rise in prices. Therefore, there is an opportunity to take product out of what is left unsold, which we suspect should not be very little. But, perhaps punished by the low prices that are taking place, the supply prefers to wait and get more decent prices. But here the question arises, will we wait too long and when we want to sell it will be too late? will we be losing an opportunity to get product that we will not have in the future?


Time will tell and the coming harvest will be the main protagonist. Here in Spain we do not have the best conditions for a good flowering and harvest, although much remains to be seen, but in California there is a possibility of a very good harvest on the table, then time will tell what will happen. But if this happens, maybe it will be hard to see another train at the station and we will regret not having taken this one. Or maybe not, maybe something will happen that will make a not so good flowering and we will be able to get the product easily at more decent prices... This is up to each reader's opinion.

Regarding the organic almond, we observe, unlike the conventional, a slightly downward market from levels of 6 € / kg to levels of around 5.80 € / kg. We will see if the upturn in the conventional market can affect something to this market, although if something has shown us in recent years, where it was totally the opposite, is that everyone is different.


We are coming dates of looking at the sky, the weather, the thermometer, of talking a lot about cold, rain or lack of it... we are coming dates of waiting for flowering results and with it a lot of speculation. We must be very attentive.


We hope our comments will help.


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