“The year, 2020, was an excellent year for chicory. COVID-19 greatly increased the demand for this product. We got good prices for a good while. But, the year didn't end well," says Roel De Winter of ORCA in Belgium. “More than a week ago, prices dropped dramatically to €0,60/kg. That's very low. Although demand was pretty good, there was too much volume on the market. So, prices fell sharply. Now, they're at around €1,20 /kg again. That's certainly a good price for this time of year. For both growers and end customers."
According to De Winter, there are currently noticeably heavier grades on the market. More so than chicory growers initially predicted. "They thought there'd be a lot of lighter weights on the market. But, most are heavier. Retail demand for chicory is healthy at the moment. Exports to Italy and Switzerland also start up again in January. That's because prices are usually somewhat lower now."
“Chicory consumption peaks in the winter. But, more people are eating it in the summer too. Nevertheless, chicory consumption remains fairly stable. But that doesn't mean our market share isn't growing. Many smaller companies have stopped trading in recent years. And the larger ones are growing in size. That leads to professionalization in the sector. That's a positive development for product quality," concludes Roel.