The arrival of autumn traditionally marks the start of the peak season for nuts and dried fruit. "The year can simply be divided into three trimesters: the peak season between the end of September and the end of the year, the 'off-season' leading up to Easter, and the summer months which are traditionally a bit weaker."
"We have a few product innovations this year, such as a yogurt mango crispy, a mango passion fruit preparation with white chocolate, a cream caramel almond but also organic jackfruit and roasted edamame bean mix. Some of these new products are already listed within food retailing," explains Matthias Krings, Managing Director of Sunnyday, in Wermelskirchen.
Cost pressure is not bypassing the nuts and dried fruit market segment, Krings continues. "Raw material prices, such as chocolate, have risen significantly, with the past year being the most difficult. Overall, the prices from the raw product are okay, but we are mainly troubled by the additional costs in the drop shipment business, for example in labor-intensive shipping and handling, which in turn is due to the issue of personnel."
Matthias Krings serves a wide range of customers, including restaurateurs, wholesalers and retail markets throughout Germany.
At the beginning of the classic peak season, however, the supply situation is encouraging. Krings: "Our walnuts are very popular in Chile and the USA, and in France there are now more and more mixes available. It is worth mentioning that this year, we are testing almonds from small Greek farmers for the first time."
Nuts and dried fruits continue to be trendy
From a longer-term perspective, the market is also on an upward trend, according to the specialist. "We can now rely on a range of source countries for dried fruits. In addition to Turkey and Chile, Thailand (tropical fruits), China (ginger) and South Africa (stone fruit and raisins) also play an important role in the global market. In addition, Poland, especially for aronia, sea buckthorn and blueberries, is gradually becoming more important."
The topics of sustainability and health continue to be on the rise, which is reflected in the high demand for corresponding superfoods. "In my opinion, there is no end in sight. Our task is to meet this trend with surprising product innovations, i.e. new dried fruits and mixed products. With our natural product, we are benefiting fully from this trend. In this respect, I look forward to the future positive and we have set ourselves the goal of continuing to grow organically in the coming years," said Krings.