"Strawberry prices have been on a high level since the start of the season. However, two weeks ago, these prices plummeted. Strawberry prices dropped to below €1/kg," says Philip Van Overbeke of Aardbeien Van Overbeke in Belgium. "This extreme price decrease was due to the poor quality strawberries that were entering the market. August's heatwave considerably negatively affected quality."
The strawberries' quality has since improved, and prices have shot up. "We are now getting about €7.50/kg at auction. That indicates that there's a great demand for strawberries. We started in April and have had a lot more private sales than in other years. When the season began, we were concerned that the corona crisis would negatively affect the market. But it's been great for us."
"Production will remain stable for three weeks. Then we'll switch to greenhouse cultivation. When that production gets going, we expect a reasonably large volume of strawberries again. We usually see demand shrink as the season progresses. But we don't yet know how things will go because of the coronavirus pandemic. But, this year's dry and hot weather clearly affected the strawberry market. Many fellow growers had problems with water. That caused quality and storage issues. I had enough water at my disposal. That supply can, however, do with some replenishing," concludes Philip.