"Courgettes: "summer prices because of winter weather"

The yellow courgette has been around for years, but the consumer only recently seems to have discovered it. More and more growers are therefore switching to growing yellow courgettes. Problems with the main crop of green courgette will also make this switch easier. The crops are of less and less quality. "Growing green courgettes is at your own risk at this point."

In spite of the rising demand for yellow courgettes the price is still not right. Bert Doelman: "The courgette season did not start very promising. Because of the low temperatures of the past weeks the winter vegetables are still in high supply." Bert grows both green and yellow courgettes, both at 1 hectare. The yellow courgettes are being harvested since a month, while the green courgette, planted later, are being harvested for two weeks.

Summer prices
The production of yellow courgettes is 20% less on average, which should be compensated by an average price increase of 10 cents. This is not happening because of the winter weather. The brothers Arkenbout have seen prices of 11 cents, while courgettes can be sold for 2 euro a piece during spring. Arkenbout therefore speaks of 'summer prices'.

Arkenbout switched completely to growing yellow courgettes on 2 ha in 2018, after a grower of yellow courgettes in the neighborhood ended his business. By switching Arkenbout hopes to get a better price for his courgettes, but also because it is a labor intensive growing process, and therefore expensive. "When you wait a day too long with harvesting a courgette, it has grown too far and you can no longer sell it. So we have to cut every day."

Exclusivity

Doelman conducts his sales through auction ZON, but in 2017 Doelman managed to sell 98% of his courgettes directly to traders. In 2018 Doelman also hopes to sell as many courgettes as possible directly. He notices that more and more chefs and restaurants are interested in yellow courgettes, because it is more exclusive. There is little difference in taste. Bert: "The yellow courgette might be a bit softer."

Arkenbout conducts his sales through The Greenery, and Arkenbout hopes the prices will get better soon. Depending on the price development Arkenbout will choose in the fall whether he is going to grow green courgettes. 'Price development is essential in this choice."
 

For more information:
Gebroeders Arkenbout
mtsarkenbout@hetnet.nl

Firma Doelman

bdoelman@caiway.nl

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