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Greek producers are great trading partners for PolandAlthough their main business remains apple export and imports, Sarafruit also works with suppliers from Spain, Egypt and Greece, enabling them to supply a wide variety of fruits to the Polish market such as orange, mandarin, lemon, mango, pomegranates and watermelons.
After reports of huge losses for Polish growers, Mohamed Marawan from Sarafruit said that their production area, which lies near the Belarussian border near Bialystok was virtually unaffected by the recent cold temperatures. Due to the location, their apples flower later than other regions, also they are next to a lake which they utilise for irrigation, pumping the water from the lake to protect from frost or to hydrate during drought.
"We still have some apples in storage from last season. Due to the expected damage, for the coming season prices have risen dramatically, just over the past month. For Idared, the prices have gone from €0.50 cents per kilo to €0.70/kg. Prices will come down a bit again, once the new season starts."
The weather has gotten warm in Poland and Mohamed said that although they don't expect any more cold weather, but there is a chance in the forecast that there might be some hail. However, he said that he is not too concerned about it because the weather forecasts are often wrong and they will just see what happens.
Trade with Greece and Portugal looks promising
Amongst the countries that Sarafruit is working with, Mohamed expressed interest in doing more business with countries such as Greece and Portugal.
"We have started working more with Greek producers for oranges and kiwis and I have been very happy with the quality of the products that we have been receiving. It has been improving every year. Growers have improved their production with better machinery, better packing and quality control. I think that kiwis from Greece have a great future in Poland. Portugal is also starting to make a name for themselves with good quality, but there are still not very big supplies and the prices are quite high. They also escaped the frosts. Greece also escaped the frosts, so there could be a lot of opportunities for those markets for Gala and Golden Delicious apples."
Mohamed Marawan and Renzo Piraccini, President of Macfrut.
"I expect the kiwi to make even bigger waves on the Poland market in the coming year. Along with that I would like to increase kiwi imports and continue with the mangoes that we started last year. I was pleasantly surprised with how well the mangoes were received by Polish consumers. You can really see how they have been changing over the last few years and we are really proud of the success." concluded Mohamed.
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