The first week of July marks the beginning of the holidays in France. A highly anticipated moment after the two years of pandemic during which the possibility to travel was very limited. But if the French are on holidays, this means that consumption is low in the Ile-de-France region and sales are slower than usual on the Rungis market.
“Trade has been very complicated this week!,” explains François Moran, manager of Tropibana. “The region is deserted. People have gone on holidays. After two years of Covid, they just want to travel and enjoy themselves.”
For now, the wholesaler’s revenue has not been affected yet. “Some products like the strawberries or cherries from Belgium are sold at relatively high prices, so we are still able to respect our commitments in terms of margins and revenue, although sales have decreased. But how long will it last? We hope that the tourists in Paris will make up for the lack of consumption related to the holidays of the French.”
However, this situation does not apply to all fresh fruit and vegetables. “Today, a kilo of watermelon is sold at 0.50-0.80 euros [0.51-0.81 USD], compared to 1.30-1.50 euros/kg [1.32-1.53 USD/kg] during the heatwave. The larger supply and the beginning of the holidays have caused a drop in sales despite the favorable weather for consumption. As a banana company, we obviously suffered during the heatwave. But we compensated for the decrease in banana sales by marketing other, more refreshing products like melons, watermelons, peaches and nectarines (up to 2.5-3 euros/kg [2.5-3.05 USD/kg] or apricots (2.8-3 euros/kg [2.85-3.05 USD/kg]. This way, we were able to stabilize and even increase our revenue during this period.”