Explaining the 2015 LAVA key figures

Last year was a better year for agriculture than 2014. Crops such as loose tomatoes and multicolor lettuce achieved a boost in production. Small products such as fennel and Chinese leaves performed exceptionally well. It was also striking that the average price of many vegetables increased compared to 2014.

Increased production
In the case of loose tomatoes, we see an 8% increase in production. This is due to a slight shift in area last year from loose to clusters. In addition, the frequent sunny days made 2015 a productive year for tomatoes. In the case of cucumbers, we see production up by 30% and sales making a spectacular 83% jump. “The area increased by 25% because a number of Dutch growers joined the LAVA auctions, giving a spectacular boost to both production and sales year on year”, reports Benny Cuypers from the sales department at the overarching cooperative auction LAVA.
Multicolor lettuce also achieved growth of 35% last year. “It has been a trend in recent years for the area under ordinary lettuce to decline, diminishing in importance for the trade. Ordinary cabbage lettuce has to contend with the growing success of other types of lettuce, such as lollo rossa, bionda, red and green oak leaf, iceberg and rocket, etc. Multicolor lettuce is also an exponent of this.”
Fennel is slowly but surely outgrowing its 'small' product category. This vegetable actually achieved a 13% increase in production last year. “Deliveries to the LAVA auctions in the past five years have rocketed and in addition, 2015 was a productive year for this vegetable.”
Chinese leaves have also seen a slight increase in production (9%), which has been a trend in recent years. The 58% increase in sales is spectacular. The price rose from 0.39 euro to 0.49 euro. “Pricing in 2014 was not good, but in 2015 it was definitely better,” reports Benny Cuypers.

Higher average prices
It is striking that the average price for almost all vegetables is higher than in 2014. “Overall, the weather conditions last year were good. Less product was imported from southern Europe last year, because of the extreme heat and drought in the summer and late summer period. This meant that products reached the market much later than otherwise in the autumn. The consequence has been that our auctions experienced a period of good to very good pricing in the summer and autumn, for many products. In the case of our home-grown outdoor products, the drought meant modest supplies in the autumn, with higher prices the result. 2014 overall was not a good year for farming, and 2015 was noticeably better”, concludes Benny Cuypers.

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