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While there is growing concern in the South African fruit sector about this season’s citrus and pear exports to Russia, there is also growing criticism of the South African government’s stance on the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Pear exporters said that it was not just a matter of switching the fruit intended for Russia to other markets.

“Russia normally receives a specification of fruit which we cannot offer to other markets,” said Gysbert du Toit, marketing director at Dutoit Agri at Ceres.

The South African table grape sector is less exposed in the current situation, according to AJ Griesel, chief executive of SATI.

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