On 1.4.2020, Christian Hoffmann, who has been a buyer and seller for many years, officially took over the Düsseldorf wholesale company Becker & Wermelskirchen LLC. In the months that followed, the Corona pandemic reached its peak and the crisis had a massive impact on the markets. And another small wave of the virus over the coming winter cannot be ruled out, says Hoffmann.
Left: Christian Hoffmann took over the succession on 1.4.
Right: The sales area at the Düsseldorf wholesale store.
The wholesale market is currently in the quiet before the storm: stand sales are still somewhat quiet, but from the middle to end of October the classic winter season will start and tons of citrus fruits, imported vegetables and exotics will be traded. "In the meantime, market activity has returned to some degree to normal. In spring -at the beginning of the pandemic- sales were higher than they had been for 15 to 20 years."
Some of the fresh fruit and vegetables are transported to customers in the company's own delivery vehicles.
Consumer behavior and price mark-ups
According to Hoffmann, consumer behavior has changed completely within a very short time. There has been an increase in purchases at weekly markets and in specialist retail stores. Due to the higher demand, bottlenecks and corresponding price surcharges occurred in some cases. "Chicory was quite scarce at Easter and was sold, for example, at €25-26 per box; about three to four times the usual price."
In the meantime, consumer behavior and price levels for most products have returned to normal. "Due to the difficult air freight situation, this is sometimes much more expensive than usual. As an alternative, we are currently also offering high-quality mangoes from Spain."
Ready-to-Eat mangos in the incoming goods department of Becker & Wermelskirchen LLC
New customers & partnership with Sanlucar
Despite the eventful months, Hoffmann looks back on a successful first half year as managing director of Becker & Wermelskirschen. "The dissolution of Heinz Hausmann Fruchthandels has opened up new opportunities for us. We have been able to take over not only a part of their clientele, but also some product groups. For example, we are now the exclusive sales partner of Sanlucar at the Düsseldorf wholesale market," Hoffmann concludes.
For more information:
Becker & Wermelskirchen Fruchthandelsgesellschaft mbH
T: +49 2114 220 970
M: +49 173 8354 228