Wim’s market update: The last mile and a preview of the new season

In this column, we give the floor to Wim Waterman. Familiar with all the ins and outs of the onion market, Wim gives a short update on what strikes him in the market. This week, Wim’s outlook for the last three months of the season.

“I don’t see the global demand for onions declining any time soon. The market prices are reasonable globally.” Additionally, the demand within Europe will improve, according to Wim. “Now that sufficiently lower qualities of onions have been cleared to alternative destinations such as Poland, the quality of the remaining batches is reasonably good.

Furthermore, it is estimated that fewer onions will be imported from popular countries such as Egypt and New Zealand, which means that there will be more room on the world market for the Dutch onion.” While there was talk of a surplus at the beginning of the season, we can say that we can easily get rid of all onions in the Netherlands, according to Wim. “Only the logistical problems continue to hinder us, and given the latest developments in Ukraine, the flow of goods is indirectly affected.”

Acreage shrinkage

According to Wim, the expected acreage shrinkage for the 2022/2023 season will result in less pressure on the market. “I also expect international growers to opt for potatoes and grain in greater numbers because of the upward pressure on the price of these products due to the tensions on the world market. This will probably result in less interest in onion cultivation.” Whether this will also lead to a price increase in the coming season is still challenging to predict. “In terms of prices, we are completely dependent on transport prices; if these rise further, the market price will rise even further. Which will not end up with the grower or with us.”

Certified cultivation

Wim does have some advice for growers who will be growing onions in the coming season: “The demand for certified cultivation continues to increase both in Europe and worldwide. As we see, certificates such as  Planet Proof and Global Gap are becoming a requirement from Retail increasingly. Suppose you want to expand your sales markets as a grower? Then I recommend that you take an intelligent look at the required certificates. With uncertified onions, you are at the mercy of the bulk market.”

Overall, Wim sees good prospects for the end of the current and the coming season. But with a black border.