Jan Vermeiren, Exofi:

"Shortages and high prices for many exotics"

It's pretty quiet on the market. Remarkable is that with many products, there are shortages and high prices, says Jan Vermeiren of Exofi. "Take Spain for instance, production of avocado and mango is 40 to 50% lower this season. This means prices are a lot higher than in other years. This also has a huge impact on sales, although the period leading up to All Saints' Day is always a lot quieter."

Prices doubled
He continues: "For the Spanish Bacon avocado, 8 to 9 Euro a crate is given. In normal seasons, that was 4 to 5 Euro. And that's only a green variety, which loses more and more of its market share. The Hass are even pricier, at around 15 to 16 Euro a crate, double the usual price." Supplies of many other exotics are also a lot lower. "Pineapple is reported to have 60% less volume. This is related to climatological circumstances in Costa Rica. I believe there hasn't been such scarcity in 20 years." He says there are also shortages in products from various South American and African countries, as a result of El Niño. "In Peru, there is a lot less asparagus and mangoes. Brazil is also behind with its mango production. Other exotics with high prices are mange touts and beans from Kenya."

Spanish citrus
Exofi has been supplying Spanish citrus as well since a few years. "The Clement season has started at a reasonably high price level now. Spanish lemons are also expensive, nearly double the normal price." Sales of Clementines are difficult, Jan says. "For the Clemenrubi and Oranules, they want 1.80 to 1.90 a kilo in Spain. That's not easy to sell here." Still, he expects this won't last long. "These are the early varieties, and because supplies aren't high, they can still keep prices up, but as soon as the Clemenules arrive, prices go down rapidly."

For more information:
Jan Vermeiren
Werkhuizenkaai 112
B-1000 Brussels
Tel: +32 2 243.12.49
GSM: + 32 475 86.09.80

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