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Italy: Bad weather, slow consumption hit growers

FreshPlaza spoke with Giuseppe Fuzio, production manager of Ortofuzio, Apulian company producing vegetables.

"Products we sell cover a great part of winter months, December, January, February and March. A good period for the market as winter in Apulia is mild while in many European countries and in northern Italy cold affects production, increasing the supply from southern areas."

"This year is strange for many reasons" Giuseppe explains. "There have been  problems and difficulties: bad weather of last months, spring temperatures and now about 20 °C. Marketing situation did not change compared to last year, it could get worse."

"From December to March we have seen very difficult months: despite holidays December was very bad; In January and February it snowed also in Apulia and growers recorded an increase in prices, but only for a week."

"Prices are so low because of an overproduction causing a greater supply of product despite of snow. Further, the consumption crisis became more evident in the last year, with great uncertainties for the future, and the temperatures of last years are more and more tropical. The truck drivers' strike did not help us and our clients look with awe at this situation" Giuseppe says.

As for its products, Ortofuzio is not particularly affected by foreign competition, but
clearly the evident domestic overproduction in Italy is relevant.

"Our production covers a cultivated area of 60 hectares, divided into different sites. Our major sale channels are big retail and fresh-cut companies (with direct supply)."

"Production plans are developed in harmony with our clients, respecting the appropriate specifications. Volumes vary because production plans are different every year. For 2011-2012 plan, we have totally about 2 million green celery plants, 700.000 Catalonia chicory plants, 1.4 million smooth parsley plants, 1.5 million chard and 300.000 Lollo plants" Giuseppe concludes.

Ortofuzio is a member of Tacler (www.tacler.com).

Az. agr. Ortofuzio
Giuseppe Fuzio, production manager
Via Vignale n. 49
70031 Andria (BT)
Phone: +39 (0)883 553245
Fax: +39 (0)883 553245
Mobile: +39 339 1166885
Email: ortofuzio@alice.it

Publication date: 3/19/2012
Author: Maria Luigia Brusco
Copyright: www.freshplaza.com


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