French chicory problemsThis article was originally published in Foodnews
A SATURATED market and a drop in prices have created difficulties for French chicory producers and traders. Although the supply level has been average, demand has not been strong enough and growers had to destroy some of their crop. The mild weather this year has affected consumption and promotional campaigns have failed to revitalise it, the ministry of agriculture explains. In March, the production price index was down 39% on the previous year and 22% below the five year average. Cultivation of chicory roots continued to decline this season, with an 8% reduction to 10 766 hectares. This was 16% below the average of the past five years. However, production of chicory roots was up 16% at 353 994 tonnes, signalling a return to more normal levels. Production of chicory heads was also up 16% at 208 172 tonnes.