Reprinted from Foodnews, 29 September 2009, Page 7
Letter to the Editor
I would like to comment on the headline ‘Price crash in passion fruit juice market after recent record high’ (FOODNEWS 11 September). I don’t think it was wisely chosen. The record high prices of over US$10 000/tonne fob were an aberration and were only recorded over a few weeks in the summer. Very few contracts were traded as there was simply no fruit.
There are some 10 000 farmers, or maybe more, in Ecuador that are dependent on passion fruit harvesting. It is not in their interest to see this kind of speculative talk. The only people interested in wide swings are traders. While we are technically traders as well, we see ourselves as marketers and we are not interested in short-term profits. Everyone who is serious about passion fruit and whose business is significantly committed to passion fruit will agree with this. We have tried hard to maintain some sort of stability even under crazy circumstances these last 12 months.
We have invested 20 years in building the passion fruit as a fruit of choice for any exotic blend. This is what we do for a living. We are not a non-profit organisation but rather we can only make money long-term if we consider all the stakeholders including but not limited to our customers and farmers!
We value FOODNEWS as a unique source of information. I would like to ask you to keep the headlines businesslike and factual. They should not be used as a means to move market pricing.
Thanks again and keep up the good work. Like your new website by the way!
Gert van Manen
President iTi Tropicals, Inc.
Yes, I take your point: the price has not returned to anything like its ‘normal’ level. However, a fall of US$5 000/tonne in a couple of weeks could be termed a ‘crash’ in anyone’s language. But we will try and keep our headlines non-contentious!