"Across the board, we had quite a bit of activity in soft fruit during the holidays, but from week 53 onwards, the supply has been hit hard by the cold in Southern Europe. For us, this mainly concerns raspberries and strawberries from Spain and Morocco. We expect only half the usual supply of these in the coming weeks," says Ronald van Vossen of Angus Soft Fruits Europe from Ridderkerk.
"The Spanish supply in particular will lag behind considerably. This is also reflected in the prices. On the free market, raspberries are now sold for 9-10 Euro per kilo and the strawberries were fairly constant at a level between 4 and 5 Euro for a long time, but are now also shooting up to 7-8 Euro," Ronald notes. "Those are pretty absurd prices for the time of the year. The question is whether the growers will manage if they only have half of their supply."
"Our blueberries come from our own growers in Chile and we now have most of them on the water. As a result of strikes in Chile, the supply was significantly delayed in week 52 and 53. As a result, there is now little stock available and that makes the sales a lot easier. We have blackberries flown in from Mexico, but that supply has been more than halved due to limited cargo capacity and high prices."
The company has made it through the Corona year 2020 well. "Before the first lockdown measures were announced, we already experimented a lot with working from home and we also quickly responded with plexiglass screens and disinfection in our packing station. That turned out to be a good bet," says Ronald. "We cannot complain in terms of sales. 80 to 90% of our sales are in retail in Europe, which means that our turnover has grown by 418% in the past year."
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