Colder weather works its magic on home-grown roots and brassicas and Spanish growers come into their own with cracking salads and citrus.
As good friends and colleagues of Charlie Hicks we were devastated to learn of his peaceful passing recently. His passion for produce was a shining example to all. Above is a little reminder why everyone loved working with him so much. He will be dearly missed by everyone who had the pleasure of spending even the smallest amount of time with him. Truly gutted.
DOWNLOAD THE PDF VERSION OF THE REPORT HERE
The Spanish strawberries season has now started replacing supplies from Egypt and Israel. At this time of year strawberries aren’t renowned for their eating quality !
Blackberries from Mexico, blueberries from Peru, raspberries from Spain and red currants (very expensive) from Holland are all available from your local Total Produce depot.
Spanish Seville oranges (marmalade) are now at the end of their season so hurry up and make the most of them before they’re all gone. The first blood oranges have made an appearance but still lack a bit of colour, this will improve as we head further into the month.
Moroccan Nadorcotts are by far the best tasting easy peelers on offer at the moment. Turkish Mineolas will start soon. South American melons are very good quality at the moment – cantaloupe, water, galia, piel de sapo and honeydew.
We aren’t likely to see any new season Spanish melons until late March / April.
The first offerings of forced rhubarb are starting to come through nicely. Prices are relatively expensive as supplies are still very limited. We aren’t expecting to see any price reduction over the next few weeks especially as demand will be high as we head towards Valentine’s Day.
The ever changing weather conditions both at home and across much of Europe is having an effect on the availability of many root crops and brassicas. We are now seeing more arrivals of cauliflower from Spain and France as much of the UK crop comes to an end.
Purple sprouting has been weather affected and the small quantities that are available are commanding high prices.
Best value for money: green kale, leeks, celeriac, Jerusalem artichokes, romanesque and rainbow chard.
We are now heading towards the end of the Spanish onion season and prices will continue to rise throughout the month. New season Chilean onions will be with us soon.
Bunched carrots and bunched beetroot from Spain and Italy are very good quality. Many sprouts growers have now finished for the season although there are still some small pockets of supply so please don’t remove them from the menu yet!
At this time of year we are very much in the hands of the gods when it comes to the supply of most salad items. The majority of produce is imported from Spain, France, Holland and North Africa.
Demand has slowed down since the festive period has finished but weather conditions dictate the supply of peppers, cucumbers, tomatoes and all types of lettuce.
Your local Total Produce depot will keep you up-to-date with information on any supply issues.
Tomato supplies have been helped along by some early new season fruit from Holland and supplies from growers in Morocco.
Watch out for the first arrivals of home-grown British tomatoes.