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Italy: Low priced conference putting segment under pressure

FreshPlaza talked to an operator about the situation of the pear trade in Italy.

In general, there is a wide difference between the prices of small and big grades. In addition, the fact that the Conference variety from Benelux is sold at very low prices puts the whole segment under a lot of pressure.

According to the operator, "the creation of 'single-product' organisations led to controlled quotations and stable prices, especially as less volumes are directed to those traders who do not offer price guarantees to producers generating unnecessary competition."

For what concerns the single cultivars, there are limited stocks of Abate, as bad weather damaged the orchards, though prices are quite stable. There is great difference between 60/70 and 70+ due to the lack of availability of big grades and the high demand for them on the German market. Quality and shelf-life are excellent, so quotations could improve from mid-December or early 2016.

Foreign sales are increasing for green William pears, which will be sold at least until late January. Red Williams though will only continue for a few weeks as quantities are limited.

Only big grades are required for Decana pears and there is competition form Benelux produce sold at cheap prices.

Kaiser are not doing brilliantly at the moment, as the North-European countries are less interested in them. Producers are hoping for an improvement as of January 2016.

Finally, both supply and demand of the Conference variety are slow at the moment, as usual, and the produce is mainly sold on the domestic market.

Author: Rossella Gigli

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