Earlier this year, Fortuna Frutos Continental and Fortuna Frutos International moved to a new location in R&M Forwarding's warehouse in Ridderkerk, the Netherlands. According to Gert-Jan Slobbe, that was an improvement in several respects. "The new premises meets all the latest standards, and we're on top of trade here. We're also logistically ideally located, close to the highway. We're, thus, set for the future," he says,
Next month, the new Canary Island and Spanish import seasons begin at Fortuna Frutos Continental. "In two weeks, we start with limited volumes." Gert-Jan expects a stable volume of tomatoes and cucumbers from the Canary Islands. "But we face uncertainties as the season starts. It's not only growers who are having gas and energy price struggles. Also, there's the question of how the whole economic situation will affect consumer buying behavior."
"Most of the Dutch lit cultivation will be suspended. We don't know how that will affect the products always available to us in other winters. Spain's planted more tomatoes, but those won't fill the gap Dutch tomatoes left. Most Spanish growers are switching crops; it's not that they've added hundreds of hectares of acreage. No one knows what's going to happen; come April/May, we'll all know how it turned out," Gert-Jan continues.
"The coming weeks are generally going to be compelling. Local productions are declining. Dutch growers had high yields in the spring and summer, which are now largely ending. Plus, there are not yet enough import products available to fill that demand. That's resulting in high prices. At the same time, all growers, whether in the Netherlands, Spain, Morocco, or the Canary Islands, are facing significantly higher costs. You have to wonder how the market will react to that," he adds.
"We're pleased to welcome our business partners at this year's Fruit Attraction in Madrid after a few years of absence."
"For us, the event's timing at the start of the vegetable import season is perfect," concludes Gert-Jan. Fortuna Frutos' stall is in Hall 9, no. A03.