In the summer season Willem Bakker of the French branch of BioTropic in Perpignan mainly sells Dutch organic vegetables and fruit on the French market, but in the winter the situation is reversed. Then, the focus is on the Moroccan import package, which is mostly exported to countries such as the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Scandinavia, and the United Kingdom.
Willem: "As a result of the increased demand, quite a few Moroccan growers have switched to biological growth. During the season, we import around 3,000 ton of produce from Morocco." His colleagues traveled to the cultivation areas in Agadir and the region of Marrakesh, to perform a mandatory annual audit, to look at the current status of the growth, and finalize agreements with growers.
The vegetable package mainly consists of red and yellow bell peppers, cucumbers, courgettes, and beans. Willem: "We are now receiving the first bell peppers, but the market is fairly satiated because of the last harvest from the Netherlands and Belgium, and the Spanish supply."
This does not apply to the courgettes, with which BioTropic starts in two weeks' time. Willem: "Because of the New Delhi virus in Spain and the weather conditions in Italy, hardly any courgettes are available in Europe, so we cannot wait to start with the Moroccan product. Prices are already at 3 euros per kilo.
Willem: "Organic Nadorcott tangerines from Morocco are usually sold between February till the end of April. The citrus season went very well last year, so we are happy to start the organic clementines this year. We start at the end of November, and we can make a nice bridge to the Nadorcott season. We are also conducting a small test with pomegranates in the coming weeks with an eye on the 2019/2020 season."