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Wholesale prices of strawberries in Poland are down this summer

The wholesale price of strawberries is down in Warsaw, but still Polish growers say they have a problem getting rid of their fruit.

Wholesale prices of strawberries in Poland are down this summer to 5 zlotys (€1.10) a kilogram from 6.5 zlotys last year. But retail prices are rising. How so? Some suggest the price volatility is mainly due to COVID-19, which has played havoc with staff recruitment, and the up and down weather this summer. When the weather can change within minutes from tropical rain to dry summer heat, demand is impossible to predict.

"One day they sell quickly, the next they take a few hours," a trader says. "Sometimes traders will buy a larger container of strawberries and on the way to the sales outlets in the city, the weather will change and the price will tumble. What do you do then?" he asks.

On the supply side, strawberries do not like a lot of water, and when the heat comes it makes them rot quickly, he adds. The quality of this year's strawberry harvest is down, says Bozena Nosecka from the Institute of Agricultural and Food Economics. "Strawberry volumes may be the same as last year, but their quality is worse," she said. added that recent heavy rainfall and storms have destroyed many fruit plantations. For consumers, prices are also higher in part because buyers include the cost of risk like spoilage in the price.

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