Citrus sales in the UK are remarkably poor post-Christmas, with no exception for variety or country.
“The Spanish orange and clementine season never took off in Spain and, from November onward, demand has been poor, the quality is good, but values are low," said Jack Hanson from Fountain Fresh. “We are not quite sure why, but there has been a high supply, it could be that demand is normal but with too much supply the is market is full. It is the same for lemons and limes.”
Now Egyptian oranges are on the market which has depressed the market further, because they is a lot of it on the market, again according to Jack, the quality is good but the prices are far below expectations. “A 15kg flat pack of oranges which would normally go for £10-£12 is selling for just £6-£8 which is far below the price needed to cover costs. Mexican limes should be £5.59-£6 are going for £3.50.”
January should be a good month for citrus, but it is not happening this year. “I don’t think it has anything to do with the mild weather, it’s purely over-supply. People don’t seem to be interested when there is too much, only when there is not enough supply.”
“We still have Moroccan clementines in stock so there are Spanish satsumas, Spanish clementines all on the market. Now Moroccan Nadercotts have started and they should hit a very strong market but they haven’t, they have started expensive but they are not going to sell. Spanish oranges should also be strong but they’re not because the Egyptian ones are on the market, so nothing is getting a good price.”
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Jack Hanson, Director