At the stand of the Munich wholesaler Or-Pa Handels LLC, mini vegetables are currently the dominant feature. The company's wide range includes peppers, aubergines and courgettes. Although the producers on the Turkish west coast have been increasingly specialising in the cultivation of mini vegetables in recent years, the product segment still remains more of a niche within the German trade, says Seckin Yildirim, Managing Director for Fruit and Vegetables.
Stand manager Seckin Yildirim of Or-Pa LLC sees further growth potential for the Turkish mini vegetables.
There is no talk of Christmas sales in the Munich Grossmarkthalle a good two weeks before the holidays. Yildirim predicts that it will not be until week 51 that the wholesale market clientele will start with the Christmas stock as expected. Nevertheless, the Or-Pa LLC team is already trying to attract customers with tasty and surprising treats, including a wide selection of mini vegetables. "The mini vegetable is quite a stable market segment and usually does not register large fluctuations. We are buying this product range mainly from Spain and Turkey and are already able to offer these products all year round."
Packaged mini vegetables of the Turkish brand Fresh Farms
Continuous expansion of the product range
At the moment, mainly mini vegetable products of the Turkish premium brand Fresh Farms are on offer. Nevertheless, Yildirim confirms that Spain is still the leading supplier of the European fresh produce trade in this distinctive product area. "Spain is still far ahead of the game, although Turkish producers have invested quite a lot in the cultivation of mini vegetables in recent years. When we first purchased mini vegetables from Turkey a few years ago, there was only a limited selection of some variations. Since then, the cultivation and with that the assortment has been substantially extended. This is why we can offer all types of mini vegetables from Turkish soil as well."
Peppers and mini aubergines from Turkish cultivation. All varieties of mini eggplants (black, striped and white) are now available from Turkey.
Higher production costs and final prices
Despite the expanded selection of mini vegetables, the specialist retailer does not believe that the small products will become a major sales product in the future. According to Yildirim's estimates, the average turnover of mini vegetables is still only one tenth of total vegetable sales. "Compared to normal vegetable crops, mini vegetables are sometimes twice as expensive. But of course the production costs are much higher when we compare them to normal aubergines, courgettes and cucumbers. All in all, the mini vegetable is an interesting niche for Munich wholesalers. Customer demand will certainly grow somewhat over the next few years, but in my opinion it will remain more of a secondary area."