Up till now, Egypt’s strawberry season has been very good. Last year, it was quite difficult, but cultivators have been satisfied so far this year. “Volumes are larger than last year. We then exported slightly less than 5,000 tonnes by around this time, but now we have already exported more than 7,000 tonnes,” says Alain Tulpin from Tulpin Group. For years already, Tulpin Group has been taking care of air freight for Egyptian strawberries in particular. “Prices are not extremely high, but not very low either, they are average.”
Egyptian strawberries until after Valentine’s Day
The reason it has been going so well is the fact that Spain started later, and sent smaller volumes as well, according to Tulpin. “It is not extremely cold in Huelva, so volumes from Spain are now increasing. Morocco is also a supplier, and it has been colder there than in previous years, so they are also sending smaller volumes.” He indicates that the strawberry season is not yet finished in the UK. “In other countries, such as Belgium, the Netherlands and Germany, they have already switched to Spanish, but the UK will continue to offer Egyptian strawberries until after Valentine’s Day.”
This year, Egypt did not just send strawberries, but also iceberg lettuce for various European countries. “We now get full shipments from Egypt, because we just have too little product. Spain is harvesting iceberg lettuce of 150 grammes, that is very small. For now, it looks as if production will remain at a low level. It is snowing in Murcia, of course, and it could take a month before we have got rid of this and everything normalises again. The shortages will remain, because the real productions in the Netherlands and Belgium will not start until somewhere around week 20,” Tulpin concludes.