A leading ingredients expert has warned that the tomato market will be much more expensive than last year due to a number of factors. An increase in the cost of fresh tomatoes, tinplate and energy, together with low results of this year’s crop creating a total lack of stock, are set to see prices rise.
Wholesale prices for tomatoes are up 20% already and are predicted to grow by a possible 50% as the 2021 crop is harvested and enters the market, with a significant proportion of this increase passed onto consumers. Ingredient’s supplier, Jason Bull, Director, Eurostar Commodities said: “Prices are increasing by more than 50% compared to pre-season 2020. Suppliers in Italy have now started to offer prices for this year’s new crop, asking for an average 20% more than last year. In the last few months foodservice prices have not increased proportionally since demand was low, but now the market is re-starting and prices are going to the level we expect for next crop.”
This shortage and price increase will predominantly affect quality tomatoes picked and canned for freshness. Tinned tomatoes feature as a key ingredient on supermarket shelves for everyday dinners such bolognese, pasta sauce, chilli and soups, to name but a few.
Quality tinned tomatoes are also used in restaurants and foodservice with hi-brix level tomatoes (for extra sweetness) being particularly popular. Price increases will include whole tomatoes, peeled plum tomatoes and chopped tinned tomatoes.