Radicchio market in the Chioggia area

29th November 2017

Do you remember our blog where we talked about the Radicchio auctions?

We decided to go and see how nowadays the market of Radicchio in the Chioggia area works.

With the help of our Radicchio grower Agostini we got access to the Rosolina Radicchio market – which is now the main market for Radicchio in this area.

In fact, driving through the Chioggia one, there was nobody there and we have been told that except for being a logistic platform for a few logistic companies, there isn’t enough work. That’s a pity because the area is huge and the structure is modern and it has been the main market for ages.

Rosolina market instead is more recent than Chioggia market, but their good organization keeps it alive.

The problem of the area is that nowadays anyone looking for Radicchio goes to the growers directly. The cause is the fact that when the growers sell through wholesalers the wholesalers add on their own cut. In the past there was a lot of product and high demand and this was ok, but now that the demand is lower the wholesalers sell at a price where the growers don’t make a profit at all. Also, another problem is that generally speaking at the markets it is difficult to find a radicchio with a traceability. Moreover, in the past there was just the local product; now there is the hybrid seed which means that potentially Radicchio can be grown everywhere – except during winter when it’s cold and the Chioggia area is still the only place where you can cultivate it.

Here is the main wholesaler of Rosolina market. He organises his business very well, working with just a few trustworthy growers of Radicchio, which are also certified GlobalGap and can give the customer the traceability of the product.

We are talking about Fratelli Frasson srl, they have the highest quality standards and the largest number of clients at the Rosolina market. We met Andrea Frasson, manager of the Fratelli Frasson. He explained us how the radicchio market works now. All the product at the market is raw so the clients are all buyers that need to work the product before selling it to the final destination. There is not prepacked product for the mass retail channel.

Concerning the traditional auction, these aren’t everyday like they used to be in the past. There are two main periods in which there is one everyday and it’s when there’s not enough product around: September and more often in April.

There isn’t a minimum and a maximum price for the auction. So, there can be times that the price is really low because there is a low demand or times when the price is really high because everyone needs product (April for example).

Fratelli Frasson sells mainly to Italian distributors that work the product and sell to Europe.

There are usually around 500-600 quintals of radicchio everyday available at the market. From December the quantities start increasing. Then they close in March and re-open in April.

When there is the auction it starts at 9 am but it doesn’t take long. The product can be taken all by the same buyer or not, this depend on quality, product size if it’s all the same or different and if it’s either local or hybrid.

Inside the Rosolina market there are 4 wholesalers– all of them do their own auction and need their own auctioneer.

A really interesting experience and a different reality in our fresh produce sector.

We’re going to go back in April to see what the auctions are like!

Stay tuned.