The first Moroccan strawberries of the season arrived at Rodanto at the end of last week. Edward Velasco from Rodanto said it has been a slow start to the season, but the quality of the fruit was good. “The temperatures in Morocco and in Spain dropped very quickly, which slowed the production cycle of the strawberries.”
Rodanto's strawberry production in Larache, Morocco.Rodanto has growers in both Spain and Morocco, as well as in the UK, which is necessary, as "there is a big demand in the UK, Europe, and also Dubai." Production in Morocco has increased from 150 tonnes last year to an estimated 250-300 tonnes this year.
“This will allow us to go right through with Moroccan production and not stop when the Spanish season starts again. We are a Spanish company and our focus is on our Spanish growers. The extra production from Morocco means we can increase our customer base and volumes into the UK.
Photo: Technical manager Faisal Yesfi Madani analyzing the crops
“Moroccan production is improving in quality every year and transport time to the UK is now only 4 days, which is reflected in the quality of the arrivals. It is only 36 hours more than transport time from Spain. The journey time is shorter from Morocco as we now have enough volume to fill whole trucks and no longer have to tranship in Spain. There is also no duty to be paid in Spain, which helps on a cost side.”
The whole production and supply to the UK and Europe is changing rapidly, according to Ed. “As energy costs increase, indoor production is becoming less viable in the winter, which will affect the UK and Dutch production. Egypt has to airfreight fruit to Europe, and with the increasing rates, this also becomes unviable. There is a real shift happening.”
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