A shortage of lemons as supply shifts from Spain to Argentina has sent prices rocketing across UK wholesale markets.
Traders at Bristol wholesale market said Argentinian supply would usually have started by now, and there is normally a brief overlap with the end of the Spanish season. But the delay in imports has meant that prices are higher than usual at this shoulder period of the season.
Sales and marketing manager manager at French Garden Bristol, Dan Purnell, said lemon prices have “shot up”. “There has been a delay on Argentinian lemons, but we expect them at any minute. It’s the same for everyone,” he said.
“Limes have also nearly doubled in price. Normally we get them from Mexico and Brazil, but Mexico aren’t shipping any at the moment. Because Brazil knows that they can charge what they want.”
Salesman at Total Produce Bristol, Keith Fear, said the lemon shortage is down to a natural poor cropping year for the Verna Spanish lemon variety, which occurs every three years.