Our March crop report is a snapshot of what’s happening in the world of produce in any given month. This month we look ahead to some of the new seasonal lines we expect to see in the following months.
We also cover the produce causing us concern and what produce is at its very best!
Produce shortages from Morocco, Spain, Italy, and France have been well documented across the media over recent weeks.
This has been caused by the perfect storm of unusually high temperatures in January which caused crops to overproduce. This was followed by the unseasonably low night-time temperatures and flash storms, resulting in the products being unable to mature or simply not ripening.
Whilst some plants have been damaged, growers are quietly confident that yields will slowly increase once temperatures return to a seasonal norm. That said, we expect the challenges to remain going into March and April.
The Dutch season looks like starting a bit later than normal, late March/early April. At this point we should see signs of improvement in both quality and availability, and hopefully prices!
On a positive note, Spring officially kicks off this month.
Many chefs claim this as their favourite season down to the glorious burst of seasonal produce ready to serenade their menus with a few sweet notes of joy! Temperatures are on the rise which makes March the ideal month to introduce some of the great seasonal produce to your plates. So brace yourself for an array of iconic products and some game-changing produce!
We expect some UK berries to be arriving by the end of the month with Scottish products starting to appear by early April.
Cooking apples are now bang in season and offer great value.
This apple has a wonderful sharpness that can complement a wide range of sweet or savoury dishes.
Unfortunately, we will see blood oranges come to an end due to cold nights in Italy. On a positive note though, we expect the rather enjoyable Valencia orange to arrive in the weeks ahead.
Galia and honeydew melons will soon arrive from Costa Rica now the Brazilian season has ended.
As a result of the greater distance, we will see prices firm up until the Spanish season starts in early April.
Plums from South Africa have been sensational and these will continue to arrive throughout the month!
Spanish and Dutch onions continue to rise in price as availability becomes less.
Carrots – We have now been using strawed for the last 4 weeks which is a couple of months earlier than normal due to the cold weather in the UK at the start of the year.
This will increase pricing as availability becomes more limited.Spring crop Cyprus potatoes must be a real consideration this month. They work especially well roasted or chipped although this early spring favourite shines no matter how you choose to cook them.
It is also the ideal month to showcase the terrific Spanish and Italian artichokes. This wonderful Mediterranean vegetable with its faint, nutty flavour works incredibly well in soups, salads, risottos and so much more.
For a large dose of spring vibes on the plate, hispi cabbage has got to be an option. This glorious brassica takes very little cooking and will add a lighter feel to the plate.
Later in the month expect Spanish fresh peas to arrive along with Italian broad beans.UK leeks are in good supply and can be surprisingly adaptive in many dishes.
What to Look out For
Wild garlic is starting to appear in smaller quantities from our forager.
As the season develops, prices will ease and stocks will become more plentiful.
And by late April the wonderful Jersey Royals will be available.
As always, early crops are more expensive but as yield grows prices will come down.
This category has suffered the most from product shortages.
According to grower reports, the situation looks to be easing but will remain challenging until the Dutch season begins in early April.
We do have some stunning Italian Castlefranco and Trevise in stock. Both fantastic at adding some colour to the plate!
At Their Best in March
- Cyprus Potatoes
- Valencia Oranges
- Spanish Pea Pods
- Purple Sprouting Broccoli
- Cooking Apples
- Spanish Artichokes
- Spanish Broad Beans Wild garlic
Our monthly crop reports, like our March crop report, is sent by email every month – you can subscribe to our mailing list here.
You can also take a look at our recent blog posts here.
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