Blog: Hannah AbdullaRussia ban prompts Dutch growers to look for home comfort

Hannah Abdulla | 15 August 2014

"We eat our problem" is the latest approach being taken by Dutch farming groups to flog surplus fruit destined for Russia.

In the wake of Moscow's ban on fruit and veg imports from the EU, there has been concern among farming groups the excess supply would drive down prices in European markets.

The European Commission has reacted, announcing measures to support fruit and veg growers in the bloc.

In the Netherlands growing groups have has decided to take the bull by the horns.

Eleven produce groups, including The Greenery and LTO Nederland, have come together to launch the Samen Sterk, encouraging Dutch consumers to buy local, using the slogan "we eat our problem". The campaign has launched on Facebook, Twitter and through its own website stichtingsamensterk.nl.

The campaign adds to the idea of customer transparency, being open and honest with consumers about the position of growers and the economy and getting them to contribute to improving the situation.

Some analysts do not believe the ban will significantly impact prices. Speaking to just-food, Lianne van den Bos, food analyst at Euromonitor said: "Consumer prices are not likely to drop as often retailers have long-term agreements with suppliers for foods prices and thus are not able to drop prices," she says. 

But the Dutch approach stands out as proactive and, while hoping to be a solution to Russia's ban, there could be a long-term benefit through encouraging local consumption.

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