Size and weight of lettuce very important in Belgium

“Belgian market wants large and heavy lettuce”

People have been talking about good prices on the lettuce market for weeks already. “They have been high in the past month, both for alternative types of lettuce, and for butterhead lettuce. Prices have now dropped somewhat again, but they are still good. Prices could increase a bit further as we go towards the holidays, but producers have already anticipated the larger demand expected with more production. We will therefore have to wait and see how prices will develop. It all depends on the demand and supply ratio, as always,” according to one Belgian trader.

Prices of alternative types of lettuce
On 14 December, Lollo Bionda was sold at around 55 cents in Belgium, and Lollo Rosso was sold at 40 cents. Red oak leaf lettuce was between 50 and 55 cents, while the green variety dropped to 25 cents. A week earlier, green oak leaf lettuce sold at 60 cents. Lollo Rosso also had higher prices in previous weeks, even up to 70 cents. “The reason for the decreasing prices was an increased volume. It is also growing better in than in November, we had less sunshine then.”

Large and heavy
Butterhead lettuce is also “not doing bad at all” according to the trader. “It is currently sold at about 40 cents. Two weeks ago that was still 60 cents. But we are talking about a large and heavy lettuce, also called a Jumbo lettuce in the Netherlands. The smaller the lettuce in Belgium, the less money you can get for it. The price differences are very large sometimes. The Belgian market wants large and heavy. Weight matters far less to a Dutch consumer, but here, it really is a matter of importance. And that is the case for other vegetables as well, such as cauliflower.”

Home cooked meals for Christmas 
Around Christmas, lettuces are packaged in bags more often than usual. “More people cook at home around Christmas, so demand from retail is higher around that time. After New Year’s day, that demand comes from large kitchens and catering more often. The reason for this is that people are more likely to order in or go to a restaurant for New Year.”

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