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Koen Smedts, Laarakker Bio:
"More organic kale than expected"The kale harvest was bigger than expected, says Koen Smedts of Laarakker Bio. "The cultivation of organic kale is going well this year. It grew, just like cabbages. With regard to a three-year average harvest, we definitely have more this year. We are also pleased with the yield." Last week 4 hectares were harvested with the next being planned for next week. Laarakker Bio has agreements with growers in the Netherlands, Germany and Belgium.
"The demand for kale is growing. It is a popular vegetable in the USA. Since it was scientifically proven to have high nutritional value, it has trended in America as a super-vegetable. It is the same in Europe. We use it in shakes, smoothies and salads. It is a modern vegetable that can be used in breakfast, lunch and supper", says Koen. The vegetable is frozen and canned and the canned product is sold globally.
Laarakker Bio is part of the Laarakker group of companies. It focuses on the growing, processing and selling of organic and biodynamic vegetables.
Koen: "Consumers are becoming more aware of the importance of health and a healthy lifestyle. The demand for these products increases year-on-year. Laarakker Bio has responded to this demand since the turn of the century by expanding its organic range. Most of it is headed for the frozen food section and a small percentage is used by the preservation industry. Depending on the product, there are other markets. Carrots and beetroot, for instance, are processed for, for example, the colourants in sweets. A small part of the harvest goes to the fresh produce market."
Publication date: 8/16/2017
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