The sales of early French asparagus started last week. Restaurants are closed in many countries, but Jacques Guironnet of ASPA2 is reasonably optimistic for this campaign. “In spite of everything, some of our clients are willing to buy. The demand comes mainly from wholesalers supplying specialized stores.”
In a normal year, ASPA2 exports part of its production to Asia. “A lot of restaurants are also closed there, but it doesn’t mean that there is no demand. Our clients in those countries have diversified their sales channels. They started supplying specialized stores and some also sell online.”
In terms of quality, the campaign looks promising. “We harvested the first asparagus on Monday morning. Their size is very nice, and they are very white, with little fibre and no bitterness. We hope that the final consumer will buy asparagus to enjoy in the kitchen now that they have more time to cook.”
This year, ASPA2 is trying to explain to the final consumers why they can find French asparagus so early. “We grow our asparagus thanks to a heating network that does not use fossil fuels, so without CO2 emissions. Our heating system allows us to spread out our production regardless of the weather.” Jacques adds that the ASPA2 production is early but not off-season. “Sometimes, there are unheated asparagus on the market in February.” ASPA2 has organized its production schedule so it can also be present on the market for Easter.