(ZEROHEDGE) – Soaring European gas and electricity prices are getting worse by the day, forcing a vast network of Dutch glasshouses, the largest on the continent, to limit output or go entirely dark, according to Bloomberg. This could have a devastating impact on food supplies and boost prices ahead of the holiday season.
The Netherlands has become an agricultural giant and is the world's second-largest exporter of food by value, primarily thanks to its 25,000 acres of greenhouses that supply Europe with vegetables like cucumbers, tomatoes and bell peppers, and flowers. In 2020, Dutch exports of greenhouse-produced farm products amounted to $10.7 billion, but this year could be much less as expensive natural gas and power prices result in some operations to go dark.
Cindy van Rijswick, a senior analyst at Rabobank, said the hyperinflation in European gas and electricity prices is having a "massive impact" on greenhouses and has forced some producers to reduce lighting, end the growing season early, or plant in spring when natural gas prices subside.
Advertisement - story continues below