Leon van den Hombergh, Frankort & Koning:

"Brazilian melons bring joy to Christmas"

The melons are reaching record prices this month. Commercial director Leon van Hombergh of Frankort & Koning goes into the causes of this and takes a look ahead. "The drought in Brazil is continuing, which is causing much lower volumes. Due to the delayed arrivals it could be exciting around the Christmas weeks."

"The Brazilian was already a little lower at the start of the season and in Europe the consumption was a lot higher than usual due to the warm weather. When the first melons from Brazil arrived, the Italian and Spanish product was mostly off the market, which meant that brand new melons were arriving on an empty market," reviews Leon. "A very good quality also led to good sales. Traditionally, the melon consumption increases in December, but the availability could be a problem."

Carlo Porro (right) of Agricola Famosa visits Frankort & Koning, left Leon van den Hombergh

"With such an exceptional drought the supply is a cause for concern. In December there are no alternatives from South America worth mentioning," continues Leon. A very strong internal Latin American market also means that less and less is being sent to Europe. "The product availability will be a challenge. On the other hand we shouldn't forget that in recent years we have had to sell the product under the cost price often enough."

Besides the melon assortment from Brazil, Frankort & Koning also carries limes, mangos and papayas. Especially the latter exotic is on the rise in Europe. "The shelf space for the Formosa Papaya among retailers has increase considerably, especially in Scandinavia and Germany. The papayas go on the melon boats, in separate containers. At the moment this line comes in weekly after 12 days of sailing, and we will continue it until the spring of 2015."

For more information:
Leon van den Hombergh
Frankort & Koning
Venrayseweg 126
5928 RH Venlo
Fresh Park Venlo nr. 3822
T: +31 (0)77 3897 202
M: +31 (0)6 5123 8770
F: +31 (0)77 3897 293
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