At this time of the year we are over on supplying Dutch products. For a few weeks it was hard to import Spanish products because of the lock-down in Spain. Fortunately our Dutch growers have enough availability of greenhouse vegetables and can guarantee good quality. The prices on the other hand fluctuate because of the irregular demand.
Some products, for example radish, are limited in availability as a consequence of the corona virus and growers sowing less. For cucumbers, zucchini and capsicums the availability will increase due to the good weather in the Netherlands.
There are some problems related to labour in Europe: farmers and growers don’t know how to harvest the fields now thousands of seasonal workers cannot or dare not come due to corona virus. The Netherlands relies annually on 170.000 migrant workers, mainly from Eastern Europe. Dutch farmers asking the inhabitants of the Netherlands to work on the field and in the greenhouses. Despite many registrations, few actually come to work. The European Commission therefore decided that many workers are still allowed to cross the border to harvest the asparagus and strawberries. We expect this problem to take a while due to all the restrictions in Europe. So far there are enough workers at our own growers. Due to the closing of the schools, students have more time to come work in the greenhouses.
The current shortage of airfreight capacity makes import of exotics hugely expensive. Moreover the availability decreases because there are less flights. Transporting by air is mainly the best option for the shelf life of exotics. However our colleagues are looking for other transport options where we can still maintain and guarantee high quality.