Since the start of the Covid-19 crisis, the fruit and vegetable processing sector - as an essential sector - has done an outstanding job in meeting increased consumer demand for its wide range of healthy, safe, long shelf-life products.
Profel’s canned, frozen and dried vegetable sectors signal concerns over increases of a number of cost factors. Over the past 4 years the sector experienced unfavourable weather conditions which had a severe impact on the growth of vegetables in Europe and resulted in higher raw material costs. Costs have increased for cultivation and harvesting due to climatic circumstances resulting in lower yields. The reduced availability of plant protection products and fewer active substances, combined with extra costs to meet sustainability requirements, make the situation even more challenging.
Also, since the outbreak of the Covid-19 crisis, production costs increased due to strict enforcement of Covid-19 hygiene protocols in the factories. More recently, the sector has been facing a sharp increase of costs for packaging materials such as plastics, metal cans, carton, and wood as well as an increase in energy cost.
Finally, the pandemic resulted in a general increase of costs for logistics. As a matter of fact, upheavals in global supply chains triggered by the pandemic resulted in increased transport cost whether by road or sea. Against this background, the sector calls for a general awareness among all partners in the value chain to take these developments into account, and calls for a renewed appreciation of processed vegetable products with fair prices for our farmers and the industry to assure the viability of the European canned, frozen and dried vegetables sector.