"The season of the Israeli organic primeur potatoes runs well" Bart Nemegheer of the Aardappelhoeve tells enthusiastically. "This is mainly because of the lovely spring weather. It is really so that when the sun shines people buy more primeur potatoes." Also the sales of primeur vegetables are doing better now."
"The volumes of the primeur potatoes from the various countries are really small" the trader continues his story. "Harvests in countries such as Malta, Spain and Israel are a little disappointing because of frost and drought. Also the total area of primeur potatoes is in general smaller this year. This is not only the case with the organic cultivation, but also the conventional.
"Because of the smaller supply on the market prices are good. For the organic primeur potatoes of the variety Nicola, prices are about 70 cents. The difference with the conventional potatoes is not much this time. These are about 15 cents cheaper." Would the consumer now choose organic sooner? "I do not expect the price to have much influence when choosing organic" Bart says. "Organic is a deliberate choice and one does or does not."
Nemegheer expects a good season for the organic potatoes from Israel and will have them in the assortment until July. Normally after that it will be the Portuguese, Spanish and Italian, dependent on the market. This year they will have the Israeli ones a little longer. The potato arrivals will be spread over the whole season. Each week further containers arrive and therefore have fresh supply all the time.
Despite the good market for organic primeur potatoes the 'old' local potatoes are still not doing too well. "This really is a disappointment. Many growers still have too much volume and are not sure what to do with their harvest. Now it is a matter of looking for alternatives, such as the processing industry. This has a serious negative effect on the market price."