“French retailers and restaurateurs urgently need to raise prices for fresh fruit and vegetables”


The French companies that produce ready-to-use fresh fruit and vegetables, grouped in the Syndicate of Ready-to-Use Fresh Plant Products Producers (SVFPE), are warning their retail and restaurant customers of the serious difficulties the sector is facing with the dizzying and generalized increase in production costs. The conflict in Ukraine has accentuated the rise in prices for all costs, both agricultural and industrial. The growing number of unpredictable weather phenomena is also threatening the sustainability of French production, and some professionals may end up abandoning their harvest. The number of French producers has already fallen by 10% and the acreage dedicated to this sector has been reduced by 4.5% between 2019 and 2020.

If prices do not develop very soon, the remaining French producers will face great difficulties in terms of economic balance in the coming months, while others will be forced to stop their activity. It is the responsibility of processors (within the SVFPE), retailers and caterers to support the diversity of French agricultural production and contribute to the resilience of the French food industry.

In line with the charter signed on March 31 under the auspices of the French government, SVFPE urges retailers and restaurants to:

• Respond positively to companies’ requests to activate indexation clauses regardless of their expiry date,

• Respond positively to requests from companies to resume negotiations, even if the criteria for automatic review and renegotiation clauses are not met;

• Consider demands for higher prices for private label and products intended for commercial and mass catering.

Second disastrous wave of inflation for the industry
Already at the end of 2021, French producers asked all the actors in the chain to re-evaluate their work to ensure their survival in the face of the current inflation, also characterized by an increase in production costs (inputs, energy, packaging, transport) such as labor costs and the difficulties related to labor shortages. With the conflict in Ukraine, the sector is entering a second violent wave of inflation, with rising prices for all components of production costs, both agricultural and industrial. These additional costs, along with the growing number of weather hazards, are a major concern.

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