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"Gaston Opdekamp: "Lesser prices for a month an a half"

Less strawberries than expected at Hoogstraten Auction this year

"The strawberry season is still running, but the volumes are becoming considerably smaller. At Hoogstraten Auction the supply this week is around 340 tonnes. Last week it was 100 tonnes larger. "The volumes are shrinking," concludes Gaston Opdekamp, director of Hoogstraten Auction. Besides the decrease in supply he can also see the prices taking a nose dive today.

"They pulled up a little at the end of last week, but it's over again," he continues. "The weather conditions may be a factor, but we're not yet sure why the prices have gone down. We can only confirm that they have. The 20% drop in volume is large, but common for this time of year. The volume is still higher than that of last year, but last season we had good prices and we won't be able to make them this year. We have had lesser prices for a month and a half now."

Lower median price, less volume
"Today the median price was 3.07 and good strawberries can make between 4.15 and 4.20 at the moment. Last year this was much higher, the good strawberries were above 5 Euro at that time. I can't predict the next few weeks. Dips and peaks are normal, but they shouldn't be too long. We've had mediocre prices for a while now."As far as volumes are concerned the director knows that there will be around 7% less supply on an annual basis. "We will end this year at 28.5 million kilos, less than expected. This isn't necessarily bad, in that it matches the average better quality compared to last year. Last year's enormous production was linked to more outspoken quality problems. We expected the lower volumes at the beginning of the year, you can see it in the quality of the planting material. We are at a production which corresponds with the plants that we had stored."

For more information:
Gaston Opdekamp
Veiling Hoogstraten
Loenhoutseweg 59
Hoogstraten - Belgium
Tel: +32 3 3400233
Fax: +32 3 3147844
www.hoogstraten.eu

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