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Robert Blomsteel, EDN:

"Availability of organic greenhouse vegetables very limited, prices are at firm levels"

Over a year ago, Robert Blomsteel and Ron den Hoedt started EDN, focusing on the import and export of organic and conventional fruits and vegetables. In December, they moved to a new office in Barendrecht. The organic range, marketed under EDN organic freshness, comprises about 60% of the volume. "In the 25 years, I have been working within the AGF trade, I have mainly been active in the organic sector and it did capture my heart. But I also like the conventional trade. All segments again have their own charms," Robert says.

"Currently, we are busy marketing organic greenhouse vegetables. Due to weather conditions, availability is limited and prices are at firm levels. The programs do run, but relatively little is available for free trade," Robert says. In recent years, there has been quite a bit of consolidation among organic fruit and vegetable growers in the Netherlands. "Uncertainty about returns plays a role in this. After all, you need certainty of sales. It would be nice if cultivation revived in the coming years."

Robert Blomsteel and Ron den Hoedt.

Sweet potatoes are also part of EDN's regular range. "We offer these under our own brand Green Gold, which allows us to really distinguish ourselves in the market. The new sweet potato season will start again in Egypt in mid-July. The market is pretty good now. At the moment, we are still offering old harvest conventional sweet potatoes from Egypt and organic sweet potatoes from Portugal, and we will also be starting organic sweet potatoes from South Africa again soon," Robert says.

"Currently, we also have limes and Egyptian onions. Soon we will add a new product to our range with organic avocados from Kenya. The first avocados are now on their way to the Netherlands," says Robert. "In the autumn, we will start with Turkish pomegranates, both organic and conventional, which we will again carry under our own brand. With this, we have every opportunity to fill in programs."

EDN focuses its sales on European retail and wholesalers, mainly in Germany, Scandinavia, and the UK. "Although we are not complaining, growth in organic sales in the Netherlands has been lacking in recent years. A nationwide promotional campaign is currently underway, hopefully, that will bring some more momentum to the market. In any case, we view the prospects of the organic market with confidence," Robert says.

Since May, EDN has been the proud holder of the IFS Broker certificate. Asked about his ambition of where EDN will be in five years, the trader replies, "I hope we will have a nice, well-run company by then, with even more direct lines of communication with growers at home and abroad. We are always open to new contacts to further expand our network."

For more information:
Robert Blomsteel
Zuideinde 77
2991 LK Barendrecht
The Netherlands
[email protected]

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