Jochen Blust, Früchte Blust KG:

"In the coming season I will probably not be able to get cherries anymore"

From plums, nuts and cherries to vegetables, everything within a radius of 50 to 80 km can be sourced from the Kaiserstuhl. These particular regional products are the specialties of the fruit wholesaler Blust from Freiburg. "We are a very regional wholesaler; this is highly valued here in the area and by my customers at weekly markets and in the catering trade in the Freiburg area," says Jochen Blust of Früchte Blust KG. Blust does not demand certificates on all of the merchandise. In this way, he wants to support smaller growers as well: "Certificates are often very expensive and a producer with fruit worth € 700 can not afford certification for € 500." Regionalism and a direct relation to the individual producer play a bigger role here.

Over the winter, he also sources citrus fruits, mainly from Spain: "So far we have had a lot of domestic produce and we are now slowly switching to imports." Oranges and grapefruit are coming soon, these com ein from Spain as well." On the Freiburg wholesale market, the various nations of origin are well distributed among different traders: "Some source goods from Italy, others from Turkey or Greece. This means everyone has their specialty. This has over developed over the years." Untreated citrus fruits are particularly popular with the mainstay of the wholesaler's customers.

A product that Blust particularly cares about is tomato: "We are currently sourcing Savéol tomatoes from France, a product that is very durable, tastes good and comes from a great grower. That means it is more expensive than its Belgian or Dutch equivalent. However, because they are so good they will sell, despite the higher price." Within gastronomy, the specialty tomatoes are particularly popular, says Blust. Priced these are €4-5  per kilo compared to €2-3 for goods from other origins. After the end of the season in early November, it is switching to Dutch and Belgian goods - the quality of these products is improving year by year: "Producers there are increasingly placing emphasis on aspects such as aroma and firmness."

The autumn holidays are the last intensive phase in the region - the winter months are traditionally quiet around the Kaiserstuhl: "In the summer months we have a lot of tourists, in winter it gets very quiet." Many restaurateurs close for a while or the owners go on holiday, and really nothing much is going on," he laughs.

For the future, he is worried about the fruit growing in Baden-Württemberg: "For the purpose of bee protection, the fruits may be sprayed less and less often, which makes them ultimately unmarketable due to pests such as the cherry vinegar fly. In the coming season,I will probably not be able to get cherries anymore. Goods that I get from the producers in the evening are already partly spoiled at the opening of the stand in the morning.I used to send goods to Hamburg; that is unthinkable today. This means it will be impossible to keep up with the imported goods from southern Europe."

For more information:
Früchte Blust KG
Endinger Str.10
Tel.: +49 7642 1024

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