“Although it is true that melon and watermelon consumption is much lower in the autumn and winter, for about a month, the sales of melons and watermelons in Spain and France have been lower than usual at this time, despite the fact that they usually pick up ahead of Christmas. The bad weather has not helped in increasing the demand for the good volumes of Brazilian melons currently available in the market,” says Ramón Gil Gimeno, Algitama coordinator.
The Valencian company, based in El Puig and with stores in the wholesale markets Mercovasa and Merca Valencia, mainly markets melons and watermelons, handling about 10 and 4 million kilos each year, respectively, in addition to about 5 and a half million kilos of mandarins and oranges.
“We work with melons and watermelons all year round, during the entire production cycles of Almería, Murcia and Castile-La Mancha in Spain, as well as Brazil and Senegal. We distribute the melons and watermelons all year round so that our brand never disappears from the shelves, as with these products, especially with melons, brand promotion and reputation is very important. Watermelon consumption falls considerably during the winter months; in fact, some supermarket chains remove them from their shelves. The demand for these products usually starts increasing again by the end of February, until the summer begins, when sales soar,” says Ramón Gil.
Quite the opposite occurs with citrus fruits, whose consumption is boosted by the cold, and whose supply is quite limited this year. “Last year was a disaster and this year prices are more attractive to producers, especially in the case of clementines. However, it remains to be seen whether the higher prices will compensate for the lack of volume. In spite of the product shortages, we have been able to fulfill our orders thanks to the loyalty of our producers.
"The production available isn't that great and it shows. An example of this is the exorbitant prices that have been paid for late varieties with royalties due to the lack of clementines at the beginning of the campaign. We haven't bought those varieties; we will finish with the Clemenvillas."
Algitama continues to grow in terms of both sales and revenue, which is why it is planning to expand its reception and packaging facilities in 2020.