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Tomato market trends thrown into disarray

Can the price of tomatoes continue to rise after a summer with very high prices? This seems to be the case (again) in the Netherlands. Just like in September, the Netherlands stood out in October on the European Commission's tomato dashboard with what looks like a record price of €1.24 per kilo on average.

That is a higher average price than any recorded in the last five years. Even a small downward adjustment of the figures in the tomato dashboard, as happened for September, does not seem to be able to change this. The final average of €0.88 per kilo (and not €0.96 as stated in a previous version of the dashboard in September) is still just above average.

Click here to enlarge the graph

Special year
Since the summer, 2021 seems to be a special tomato year, even in the country with small margins. The virus problem that was the subject of much discussion this summer, the summer with 'winter prices', was to blame for this, but now the energy crisis is also having an impact. The expectation is that where there is less light cultivation, there will be more shopping in Spain and Morocco.

Click here to enlarge the graph

Spanish prices not rising
In October, this was not yet directly reflected in the average tomato prices in Spain. While prices in the Netherlands (and in Italy as well) surged in October, prices in Spain remained at the September level, which was high, but not as high as the record prices in August, which even exceeded the five-year maximum.

Trends thrown into disarray
Traditionally a dip in prices follows in November, both in the Netherlands and in Spain, but the question is whether this will also be the case this year. The clash between crops grown under light and imports could well be less, now that the planting schedules have already been disrupted by virus problems this summer and now that the energy crisis is also causing changes in the crops grown under light.

Across the board in Europe, just like in the Netherlands, we can speak of a record average. Click here to enlarge the graph

The average price in October in Italy is not a record, but the price is well above the five-year average. Click here to enlarge the graph

In France, prices are falling as sharply as they rose this summer. Nevertheless, prices are still at a high level and far above the five-year average. Click here to enlarge the graph

Less supply from Belgium
Finally, the figures of Belgium are not shown in the European Tomato Dashboard, but the Federation of Belgian Horticultural Auctions (VBT) keeps its own graph. The supply figures are also known. It is striking that in the whole of October the supply of vine tomatoes was only higher in week 43 than last year. Up to and including week 44, the supply in kilos of both trusses and loose tomatoes was slightly lower than last year.

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