May Market Report 2024

United Fresh News

Towards the end of April, we announced a very exciting secret that we have been working on for some time now… The expansion of our category offerings!

As a consortium, we have always prided ourselves in the companies we have and do work with, all being experts in their field of expertise. This has not changed during our decision to expand to other fields. Our butchery and fishmonger supply partners are passionate about their product and service, and couldn’t be a better fit for United Fresh.

We’re excited for you to get to know them better as United Fresh supply partners.

May Market Information

May is an exciting month for seasonality lovers. We have all the classically known spring products entering our depots and arriving at your kitchen doors. However, the turmoil in the agriculture industry is not calming, despite the windy, sunnier days we’ve been experiencing recently.

Again, the extremely waterlogged ground has delayed many farmers from planting their crops at their usual time and therefore delaying when they are ready to be harvested. As it’s practically not stopped raining since October last year, we can expect to see delays in the cross-over of seasons for many products including parsnips, potatoes, and carrots and more.

We keep highlighting the trials that our farmers have and still are going through. For the last two growing seasons they have had an extremely hard and unpredictable time. The most recent resulted in many farmers having to watch their crops rot in waterlogged and flooded fields, not being able to extract them and resow until the ground is better. For farmers, this is soul-destroying.

There has been a lot of news about potato farmers moving away from growing the crop in the last year, but we’ve also seen an impact from a range of farmers moving towards the government’s SFI (sustainable farming initiative) scheme. By the end of March, there had been 15,000 SFI applications, which is no surprise as this is a more stable and secure method for farmers to get paid, as opposed to the wildly unpredictable and risky nature of direct food production. However, this will impact us, as we will ultimately rely more heavily on our European and further afield colleagues to keep up with our consumption of goods.

But it’s not just the UK that has felt the impact of shifting weather patterns. To summarise the last 12 months; it’s been too wet in Northern Europe but too dry in Southern Europe, too wet in Africa alongside El Nino causing major disruption throughout South America.

As you can see, a lot of the problems we have been facing for many months now are coming to a bit of a head this Spring. However, on a more positive note, we are seeing some lovely products coming through (despite the smaller yield numbers) such as UK asparagus, Jersey Royals, UK New Potatoes, and Isle of Wight Tomatoes.

Seasonality Information

Now onto the fun bit…!


Fresh Produce

Is there anything better than a plate full of spring produce? We may be biased, but we don’t think so!

UK asparagus is kicking into gear, despite some lower yield than in previous years, the tender spears are great quality and worthy of any dish.

UK New Potatoes are coming out of the ground with their iconic fluffy, buttery texture and flaky skin which gently boiled or roasted whole elevate even the most simple of dishes.

Jersey Royals are notorious, and for a reason too! Hailing exclusively from Jersey, where the micro-climate produces the perfect conditions for the product to grow, the Jersey Royal is steeped in tradition and care.  The light and well-drained Jersey soil, alongside a traditional method of fertilisation using seaweed (locally known as vraic) that is harvested from the beaches, work together to produce this small Jersey Royal shaped nugget of joy for us to savour!

UK Strawberries are also making an appearance this month. There is nothing that shouts warm weather like UK strawberries and cream… Each of our depots have a local strawberry grower, which offers each kitchen the chance to embrace their local produce.

But if you aren’t a fan of strawberries, UK Rhubarb is also available and of brilliant quality and taste. We are currently utilising the outdoor variety, which is lighter in colour than their indoor forced cousins, but no less tasty!

The infamous Isle of Wight tomatoes will be more present this month, as the season kicks into gear. Spain have had some issues with disease, which seems to have been avoided in the Isle of Wight farm luckily. This means that we should be seeing a steady stream of the colourful fruits entering the depots!


Meat & Fish

Is it even spring if you don’t have Lamb! Our butchers have been impressed with the quality of lamb, and have been keeping a continuous flow of supply to our kitchens, ready for the springtime creations despite the rising costs due to the high demand of volume for exports. Which we are hoping will drop soon.

UK pork has seen a bit of a price increase in the last few weeks due to a major UK producer stopping production, which has created less availability in the market, but nothing we are worried about.

Salmon has been particularly troublesome due to a recent price hike, which is not expected to recover until the mid-summer months. However, the Scottish Farms have begun to offer product again, which is providing some much needed relief to our fishmongers.

We’re looking at a more positive note for fish in May, with availability increasing and some exciting product ready to be showcased. Lemon Sole and Plaice are brilliant for your flat fish, either whole or utilising the smaller cuts! For an even more premium fish, Bass and Wild Turbot are both brilliant options for May. However, if you’re looking for a cheaper (but no lesser quality) fish then Tiger Prawns will be your friend this month.

For any questions regarding the above, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us today:

Tel: 01789 339 106


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