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Jean-Pierre Dalle, Santerleg:

End of the winter vegetable campaign in northern France

In the winter, the endive is an important product for Santerleg, a company specialized in vegetables from northern France. At the moment, the market is rather calm. “This can be explained by the fact that the weather has been mild for the past 10 days. People eat more endives when it’s cold. It is also school vacation, which is always a calmer period on the market,” explains Jean-Pierre Dalle, sales representative of the company.

Organic endives

Large calibers
May 2020 was a very dry month and October was very humid. Santerleg therefore started harvesting the endive roots more than 15 days late. “As a result, the roots are quite big. This may be good for the producer, who has more volumes than usual to force, but for the current campaign, it will generate an increase in productivity of more than 5% and larger endives.”

Endives in the field

As for the niche products derived from the endive (Barbuçine, Carmine or Pissenlit blanc), Jean-Pierre speaks of a Covid effect. “We usually sell more than 50% of our niche products to restaurants, which have been closed for more than 4 months. These volumes cannot be compensated in retail. We are faced with a more than 30% drop in demand.”

Carmine and Barbuçine 

Besides endives and specialties, Santerleg offers a wide range of winter vegetables. The French cabbage season is almost over. “The import season will start on April 1st for the white cabbage (Netherlands and Belgium). For the red cabbage, we will start importing from the beginning of March. The volumes of leek have been limited this year. In a few weeks, we will end the season in the north of France, with good prices. They increased sharply when it froze in mid-February.”

Leek whites, Brussels sprouts and dandelions

Chinese cabbage

Large volumes of celery roots
“As far as celery roots are concerned, we’ve had a very good 2019-2020 campaign. So the producers have planted more, but the current demand is lower than last year. There is still a lot left in stock. Producer prices are 20% lower than last year.”

Agitated onion market
As for the onion, Jean-Pierre explains that the market is really struggling. “The European production has been very good in terms of yields this year. There is a lot left everywhere in Europe. The season should end around mid-April.”

The building in Monchy-le-Preux 

Loading the trucks

For more information:
Jean-Pierre Dalle
Phone: + 33 (0)3 21 157 157 

Publication date:
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