Fresh from Rungis:
Our buyer Nick says: "Spinach plus Oakleaf, Lollo, Batavia and Escarole salads are still coming from Provence but northern growers will start delivering soon. Spanish frisée is still great quality and plentiful. Our niece was down there in March, staying with our growers, getting some business experience. Mâche is good and at a stable price. Artichokes are more plentiful so prices are now stable. Pissenlit and watercress are over their cold-snap problems. Swiss chard from Provence is available but prices are a bit higher than normal. The coloured "meat" radishes are now nearly all finished, but breakfast radishes are fine."
"Expect more products in the baby veg range, though not everything is available all the time. There are more tomato varieties from Provence, where the little town of Pertuis also gives its name to the most prestigious of green asparagus varieties, grown in sand. Other varieties of French asparagus, both white and green, are coming in and slowly coming down in price as they near high season. Large, violet 'Opera' artichokes are coming from Spain and the first baby artichokes in bunches have come in from Brittany - so the larger varieties will be available from there soon. Yellow beans have started and we have some ultra-yellow round courgettes from Provence. There are pineapples coming in by boat so not too expensive and of lovely golden colour. We have Gariguette strawberries grown in Brittany available in 1 KG boxes."
Fresh from Milan:
Our buyer Tess says: "It should start get interesting now - the nighttime temperatures are going right up and that will steady things a bit. We're looking forward to the next cycle including the start of the fruit. Expect new lines like baby yellow San Marzano, black Marindas, Ponzino lemons, spiny Sicilian cucumbers, Romanesco courgettes, Catalogna Scaralata and wild parsley root. Later this month we'll have the very first soft fruits and melons, including ruby apricots and those little baby yellow watermelons. The little trees will start coming in, too. Blood oranges are still continuing."
Other lines include: artichokes, agretti, radicchio, dill, bruscandoli, frigittell peppers, courgette flowers.
Our buyer Gaelle is available on +33 789 866 675. She says: "In France, the last few months of cold and wet weather in France has definitely affected spring production with less volumes on most items. The winter cauliflower season will be almost over in two weeks; Savoy cabbage is end of season; leeks are short due to the heavy rain; Romanesco available for a month only. We are also already aware of delays of some spring vegetables such as new potatoes (3 weeks delays already) and artichokes. All root vegetables are still available for now. From the South of France, courgettes are just starting. For greenhouse fruit, strawberries started a few weeks ago and the price of heritage tomatoes has matched Spanish"
"From Spain, courgette price is reasonable and quality is good. Artichokes and broccoli are still available. Strawberries are currently quite short due to weather, although prices are extremely low! From Morocco, red and green chilies are available, good quality and affordable. Kapya is back on the market! The season of watermelons will slowly make its entrance, being picked first week in April in Marrakech, and arriving in Europe mid April! The Zaragoza box will be available soon. Moroccan tomatoes are still running and good quality! End of Egyptian sweet potatoes until August."
We also import a wide range of quality dried, tinned and dairy goods including cheese, yoghurt, oils, olives, spices, Boiron fruit purees and more. See here for extra info. These tinned Poires Williams are top quality and ideal shortcut for desserts.
EUROPEAN SALAD COMPANY, UNIT C61-64, NEW COVENT GARDEN MARKET, LONDON, SW8 5JJ TEL: 020 7720 7758 ORDERS@EUROSALAD.CO.UK