Be Organic programme, harvest and ship from source to meet customer requirements. Your one-stop shop for 52 week fresh produce supplies, also providing a full organic basket from growers in both northern and southern hemisphere.
Apples are still one of the feature shortages of this early spring period. However, availability improves immediately after Easter. The first and very early Chilean arrives with Gala. Superior to anything we will see from Argentina in terms of external fruit colour, juice content and a crunchy texture. There is also arrival of Argentinean Gala about the same time, Paler in colour but with a sweet and perhaps softer texture.
Rolling forward, New Zealand will be exceptionally early. So we should see an easing of prices in the next few weeks once the market vacuum has been filled. Then we might be finished Southern Hem apples by the end of July. This will create another gap as UK apples are not expected to be ready until the end of August. However, August demand for organic apples is much lower than the spring and main summer months.
Pears we see Argentina as the only organic source for a few months yet. Williams are currently holding their pressures well but prices are expected to fall back as Packham’s and some Beurre Bosc enter the market.
The only other source of summer pears that we know of comes from our Chilean supplier. The Forelle pears will be much later than last years as they will remain in cold store until the taste is right. Forrelle’s are a stunning looking pear and should justify a healthy premium over anything else on the market.
UK vegetables have taken a bit of a pounding due to the cold winter to date. We await new season varieties to get started once the warmer weather arrives.
Spain, France and parts of Italy have suffered similar weather related issues but they should recover quickly as the weather can turn to very warm quite quickly in these countries.
One benefit of the wet and cold weather is that in many parts of Spain and especially where our main stone fruit production is, the cold and wet weather is a bonus for the 2018 crop.
South African grapes can continue for another 3 to 4 weeks so we might cover all of April.
Citrus is proving to becoming interesting. A warm winter then followed by two weeks of torrential rain from Andalucía to Huelva and up into Portugal has created a lot of damage to the Navel Lates.
A lot of fruit is not worth harvesting (60% + some estimate). Spanish Valencia Lates are not ready yet and with a lot of small fruit after the 2017/18 drought growers are in no hurry to harvest hoping that the fruit will gain a calibre of two in size.
They could be sold out by the end of May and our South African growers plan to have the first fruit here in the 1st week of June.
Lemons follow a similar pattern with damage done to Verna’s during pollination by the cold snap in May 2017. Again South Africa is ready to start arrivals in 1st week of June.
Easy Peel Spanish Nadarcotts have two weeks of their season left. Then it is only the Ortanique remaining to take its place. So there will be a gap until the first SA fruit arrives in the last week of May (Bank holiday weekend!).