Russian Fruit and Vegetable market

Fruits and vegetables are part of a Russian’s basic consumer basket, and their assortment directly influences the choice of a shop

46% of shoppers admit that fresh fruits and vegetables define a place for food shopping. Attractive prices, high quality produce, seasonal products and unique SKUs are the factors that help retain existing customers and attract new ones.

Let's take a look at how the price of fruits and vegetables is expected to develop in 2023, the trends that can be observed in this product category in 2024, and the unique features of this section at the International Autumn Food and Drink Exhibition WorldFood Moscow.

Fruit and Vegetable market
Fruit and Vegetable

What happened to prices at the end of 2023?

In 2023 there was an increase in the price of many fruits and vegetables. The price of tomatoes saw a significant rise: in 2023 1 kg cost about 170 rubles, compared to January 2024 where that same kg was about 250 rubles. Overall, the price of tomatoes has increased by 45-50% over the year. The same trend can be seen for bananas who now cost about 150 rubles for 1 kg, a 47% increase from last year. According to the results of 2023, this trend also affected many popular produce such as oranges (+30%), garlic (+46.4%), grapes (+48.2%) and pears (+48.3%).

Furthermore, cabbage prices increased by approximately 44% over the year. In 2023, 1 kg cost approximately 25 rubles, and in January 2024, it cost approximately 36 rubles. Apples have also seen a significant increase in price (+20%): in 2023, 1 kg cost approximately 104 rubles, while in 2024, it cost around 125 rubles. Over the past year, cucumbers have also risen in price (+17%): today, 1 kg costs on average 245 rubles.

A major factor behind the rising prices of the above products is the weakening of the ruble against foreign currencies. Tomatoes, bananas, oranges, garlic, grapes and pears are mainly imported to Russia from abroad. The currency jump has led to both an increase in the purchase price from suppliers and in the cost of logistics, with seemingly no indications of the cost of these produce lowering. Other industries are also negatively effected, for example, the increase of price in tomatoes hinders the intensive development of the greenhouse industry in the country.

As spring arrives, domestic fruits and vegetables hit the food market, offering a stable and affordable option. Prices will decrease slightly in this category of products, although some retailers have noted that prices for seasonal vegetables sometimes increase by 10-12% at this time of year, including potatoes, cabbage, carrots, beets, onions, and cucumbers. This is due to the fact that existing stocks of these products are running out, and new ones have not yet arrived on market. Even if prices are reduced, as Alexander Korbut, vice-president of the Russian Grain Union, points out, it is important to remember that prices usually rise quite rapidly and do not return to their original cost. Prices may be slightly reduced, but they are still higher than the original.

Despite the overall inflationary pressures, some products did become cheaper in 2023. For example, the cost of 1 kg of potatoes decreased by about 9-16%, today costing around 30 rubles. In addition, according to Rosstat, in January-February 2024, export sales of domestic potatoes increased by 31%—the largest increase in sales abroad among fruits and vegetables in this period. This was also driven by an increase in potato production. At the end of 2023, it amounted to 8.6 million tons, 18% more than in 2022 and the highest in the last 30 years. The largest production volumes were in the Bryansk, Tula, Moscow, Astrakhan and Nizhny Novgorod regions.

Organic vegetables
exotic fruits

Organic vegetables, exotic fruits and other trends of 2024

The trend towards environmentally friendly products and healthy eating is still relevant, especially when choosing produce. Russian consumers are paying more attention than ever to food production methods, and show a clear preferrance for products grown without the use of pesticides and chemicals. The sales of bio- and organic products continue to grow, and farms are becoming more popular.

Vegetables rich in antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals, as well as low-carbohydrate vegetables, superfoods, and detox products are in the spotlight among Russians, particularly young Russians. Fermented vegetables are the latest craze in this area. They improve digestion and have a positive effect on intestinal function, making them particularly relevant for health-conscious people.

Russia will see a surge in organic vegetable consumption. By 2030, the domestic market will reach 150 billion rubles, with an average annual consumption of 1,000 rubles per person. Experts agree that "green" production will drive agro-export development, with a potential value of 3.7 billion rubles. Promising markets include Saudi Arabia and China.

When it comes to modern culinary trends, it's clear that exotic and unusual vegetables and fruits are making their mark in this area. These products allow chefs to experiment and create unique and memorable dishes that gourmets and lovers of new flavors will enjoy. At the same time, local produce is becoming increasingly popular. This helps to support local businesses, significantly reducing the supply chain and transportation costs, which in turn reduces the carbon footprint.

Avocado remains a leading trend product in the fruit and vegetable category, a new development as its presence on the Russian market was minimal until recently. Currently, the share of avocado sales in rubles accounts for approximately 2% of the entire industry, and the segment is experiencing double-digit growth rates in both monetary (+23%) and natural sales (+17%).

Fruits at WorldFood Moscow
vegetables at WorldFood Moscow

Fruits and vegetables at WorldFood Moscow

The Fruit and Vegetables section at WorldFood Moscow is a distinctive sector, offering a unique volume of fresh fruit and vegetables not seen at any other exhibition in Russia. WorldFood Moscow is held in the fall, which is the best time of the year to showcase fresh fruit and vegetables.

In 2023, the exhibition welcomed 20,115 specialists from wholesale and retail companies, representatives of the catering segment, and food producers. Of these, 24% (4,828) expressed interest in the products presented in the Fruit and Vegetables section.

WorldFood Moscow exhibitors showcase a diverse range of fresh, processed, and frozen vegetables, fruits, berries, and mushrooms, as well as herbs, salads, and other plant products. In 2023, 83 companies exhibited their products in the Fruit and Vegetables section.

Join WorldFood Moscow 2024 to present your products, meet potential partners, and negotiate supplies with representatives from different regions of Russia.

WorldFood Moscow 2024 will be held on September 17-20 at Crocus Expo IEC, Pavilion 3.


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