"Our trade depends on the weather. When it's far too cold and very rainy, our soft fruit sales certainly aren't stimulated," says Michel van den Berg of De Best AGF in the Netherlands. "It's far less busy than last year. Back then, the lockdown had just started. Everyone was busy eating healthily and making themselves comfortable at home. Now people are getting fed up."
"But, above all, we need nice weather for smooth sales. Last year, spring was beautiful, so we got a head start right away. Our customers are mainly market vendors and smaller stores. They depend on impulse purchases. After all, when the weather's nice, you go to the market to buy fresh fruit," Michel continues. "But now people visit supermarkets instead of queuing outside the greengrocer's door. Sunday was a nice day. Unfortunately, the next two weeks' weather forecast isn't that sunny yet. Then, it's already well into May."
"Also, many products supply is lagging considerably. And if the weather doesn't recover, we won't be able to make up for it easily. Take strawberries and, not to mention, asparagus. These are hardly available. We have to pay €8 - €9/kg for good asparagus. While at supermarkets, they sell for €6. Then you're at the mercy of the gods."
"Moroccan watermelons are now selling for €0.60 to €0.70. Last year they were going for €1.20/kg. When the weather's nice, they fly out the door. But with this cold weather, people aren't in the mood for them yet. For that, the weather needs to be stable, at around 20°C for a while," Michel concludes.
For more information:
Michel van den Berg
De Best AGF
Tel: +31 (0) 623 728 028