The mood on the celeriac market is good, according to Pierre Sweep of winter vegetable wholesaler Sweep from Zevenbergen. "We are turning over a lot of volumes and the quality is excellent. All in all, its supply and demand are well matched. I would have liked the price a bit higher now that we are moving to the tubers from the long storage, but that is now difficult to realise."
Depending on the size, the tuber prices are between 15 and 20 cents. "This has been the case for a long time. There is also local product everywhere in Europe, so with a price increase we would also price ourselves out of the market. At the moment the demand is wide. All countries are participating, from Scandinavia to Romania, Poland, Germany and France, with the industrial market also continuing to run smoothly in the background, which means that the bottom of the market also remains clear," Pierre says with satisfaction.
According to Pierre, the tuber market is not yet bothered by the effects on the coronavirus. "We don't notice it at all. I also don't see that, as has been observed in other crops, that there is speculation in the market. Transport is not a problem either. Now you never have any certainty about that, but food will probably be the last products for which the borders are locked. In addition, we are on the right side with preserved vegetables," Pierre expects.
Sweep has invested in an optical celeriac sorting machine at machine builder Sorma. A melon sorting machine is currently being converted into an optical celeriac sorter. "It costs a few cents, but we are therefore able to sort by weight with large capacity, which is a first in the celeriac. So far, we have sorted by diameter and that is usually done manually. We expect this to have a clear advantage towards our supermarket customers. "