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Market Report February 2021

The market in general

The coronavirus crisis continues and the ongoing uncertainty is dominating the situation and is now also setting the mood as preparations for the upcoming growing season get under way. The supply of ocean containers is still very limited, which is causing long delays and extremely high freight rates, especially from Asia. In the coming months, supplies must be planned very carefully, which means ordering and making delivery arrangements well in advance, as well as keeping additional stocks on hand.

Market Infos and recommendations


Following unexpectedly good catches in the West Pacific in the fourth quarter, Bangkok remains at a low level of $1,200/ton (skipjack). The situation in the East Pacific is the exact opposite, despite the fact that the second fishing closure ended there in mid-January and all fishing vessels are out at sea again. Thus, Manta has remained relatively firm at $1,700/ton. We expect to see the two markets align somewhat in the next few weeks and recommend that you cover your needs at the favourable price level in Asia until the end of the year. The growing demand for MSC-certified tuna is being covered by adequate supply coming also from newly certified MSC fisheries. The prices are attractive too with the premium over non-MSC-certified fish dwindling.


Still in short supply and expensive, especially for early delivery dates. This is now amplified with shipments being postponed due to the shortage of shipping space and extremely high freight rates. Thailand, by far the most important country of origin, continues to offer limited fresh fruit. 1 million tons are forecasted for 2021, slightly more than in 2020 (0.8 million tons) and similar to 2019, but far less than in each of the preceding ten years. All other countries of origin are either following the market level or are fully booked. The fact remains that this will only improve in the second half of the year and most probably only with the winter harvest in Thailand, which starts in October. We have made extensive provisions and are still able to offer pieces, dices and crushed Pineapple and also from certified organic fruit.


It is the perfect meat replacement for vegan meals. We offer chunks and shredded pieces in the A10 can, also from certified organic material. We are happy to provide samples. Please find our latest HL Info Jackfruit here.


Producers in China have grown cautious. None of them feel it is appropriate to put anything in the books early. Prices are not expected until early March at the earliest, after the Chinese New Year holidays. It will be a difficult season due to declining cultivation, the many old fields with low yields and pending contracts from the last season. As has been the case for several years now, centre cuts of small diameters 6–12 mm will be in very short supply. Specifications have to be extended to 16 mm and even up to 18 mm. Peru still has only limited quantities to offer. Close coordination and quick decision making will be of importance in the coming weeks.


Turkey has been out of stock for some time now already, just some questionable leftovers might still be available. We are well positioned with our long-term partners and the help of our team in Izmir. We still have limited quantities available, including some organic produce.


There is ample supply with consistently low prices from Peru. The sharp rise in labour costs in the country at the beginning of the year is also being absorbed for the time being. The lack of demand from the foodservice sector is putting pressure on prices. We offer organic jalapeños from Turkey.

Cherry Peppers

The harvest got off to a good start in South Africa and the first shipments are already on their way. However, cultivation has decreased significantly as many farmers have switched to more lucrative products in the fresh market, e.g. blueberries. There is only this one annual harvest of high-quality cherry peppers from South Africa and requirements should be covered now into next year.


As fermentation has been completed the first consignments from the recent harvests are now arriving from Spain and Morocco. Prices remain stable as Spain, the largest provider, had a small harvest. In Greece, the harvest has now ended with a positive result. The first consignments will arrive in April with prices at the same level as the previous year, which also goes for organic Kalamata olives. We now also offer olive paste in aseptic 10 kg bags, made from green or black (Amphisis or Kalamata) olives, and also from certified organic raw material. This is well suited for dips and dressings, (pasta) sauces, pizza toppings, bread spreads, fillings for baked goods, etc.

Tomato paste/diced tomato/pizza sauce

The market is significantly undersupplied around the world. Eating at home is driving special demand also for industrial items packed in aseptic bags. The harvest that is now under way in Chile is providing limited relief. It will be a hand-to-mouth situation until the new season begins in late summer. Close cooperation is urgently needed to secure the supply.

Soy sauce

The firm quotations for soy and wheat and increased production costs in China have resulted in price increases of approx. 7% on average. We offer a wide range of soy sauces in packaging from the 150 ml bottle to the 1,000 l IBC, including organic soy sauce, and have been operating in this market for decades.

Coconut milk

Strong market due to persistently high demand for copra products, which particularly affecting the market for organic coconut milk from Sri Lanka. The supply situation in the countries of origin is erratic and we recommend that you cover your needs over the long term. Owing to a lack of transport capacity, shipments have to be repeatedly postponed, which is resulting in a shortage of supply in the short term.


Following the wheat market, the price for bulgur has been increasing sharply. We offer different varieties, including double-cleaned quality and also certified organic bulgur, which are always available for prompt delivery from our warehouse.

(published 17/02/2021)


from 17th - 19th February 2021     Read more!

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