The endiviers are sounding the alarm. The price of endive reached a very low level due to a drop in demand. At the same time, the cost of production of this vegetable explodes with the increase in the price of electricity and packaging. In order to survive, the sector, which is massively present in Hauts-de-France, appeals to the government, the players in the wholesale distribution sector, but also to consumers: “Eat endive in particular”.
Chicory has been going through a major economic crisis for several months now. Endive prices continue to fall because the French no longer buy them. “We wonder where it ends! †, complains Mathieu Bouquillon, endive producer in Nord-Pas-de-Calais, at the microphone of France Bleu. The 34-year-old farmer had to reduce his production by 20% this year, thinking in this way to increase vegetable prices and compensate for the increase in electricity and packaging prices. “But it’s not the case yet, it’s a bit of a double problem”he confided in the local radio.
A gesture from the state and distributors
This alarming finding is common among the 350 endive growers in Nord-Pas-de-Calais. Since endive is not a basic necessity, their prices cannot be blocked. And according to the sector, supermarkets make considerable margins on these vegetables, while their selling price does not rise. This means that they sell their endive to distributors cheaper and cheaper. “Don’t kill a die!” (…) Reduce your margins », begs Daniel Bouquillon to France Bleu. The former producer is also asking the state to help the endive bear the additional electricity costs.
Buy more to drive up prices
To rescue a sector in crisis, the former operator is also calling on consumers. “Especially eat endive! (…) Because you only find endive in France and we know the consumer’s attachment to French products.† , says Daniel Bouqillon. Chicory sales have been falling for several months due to a “tired cook” † “people prefer to buy ready-made”, explains the ex-producer. But if demand rises, prices may rise again. Daniel Bouquillon also recalls the benefits of this seasonal vegetable: “It is no more than 50 to 60 cents per person. It is the vegetable with the best value for money. †
If it is not enough on its own, the increase in demand can still help producers cope with the effects of a crisis that has dragged on for months. So, eat endive!