Mistletoe auction reports – for those who like figures

Very busy with mistletoe stuff this season – I’ve got loads of things to blog about but am having a bit of difficulty finding the time…

I usually post a summary of the wholesale mistletoe prices at the Tenbury Wells Auctions – so here, for the record, are this year’s figures, taken from Nick Champion’s reports:

  • Tuesday 27th November 2018
    Mistletoe 1st Quality to £3.00 per kg to average £1.75
    Mistletoe 2nd Quality to £1.00 per kg to average £0.50
  • Tuesday 4th December 2018
    Mistletoe 1st Quality to £6.00 per kg to average £3.50
    Mistletoe 2nd Quality to £2.50 per kg to average £1.50
  • Tuesday 11th December 2018
    Mistletoe 1st Quality to £4.00 per kg to average £2.50
    Mistletoe 2nd Quality to £1.00 per kg to average £0.50

Compare these to 2017’s prices, which were much lower. 2018’s sales, to use Nick Champion’s words, “saw a terrific trade on best quality lots”

  • Tuesday 28th November 2017
    Mistletoe 1st Quality to £2.50 per kg to average £1.25
    Mistletoe 2nd Quality to £0.75p per kg to average £0.25p
  • Tuesday 5th December 2017
    Mistletoe 1st Quality to £3.00 per kg to average £1.50
    Mistletoe 2nd Quality to £1.00 per kg to average £0.50p
  • Tuesday 12th December 2017
    Mistletoe 1st Quality to £1.50 per kg to average £0.75p
    Mistletoe 2nd Quality to £0.50 per kg to average £0.25p

As usual do note these are wholesale prices for freshly cut mistletoe – the retail price will be much higher as the material needs to be sorted, a lot of it discarded (there’s a lot of waste in mistletoe!) and the best bits trimmed and prepared for sale. The retail price will largely reflect the time taken to do all that.

5 thoughts on “Mistletoe auction reports – for those who like figures

    1. Jeff, your references and papers are interesting, but you seem to base your mistletoe observations on the idea that you have data for sales of mistletoe without berries. I don’t know where these data are from. The material that is classed as Mistletoe 2nd class at Tenbury isn’t berryless, it’s just less attractive, more leggy, yellower etc. I’ve never seen any lots that don’t have berries. Your opening assumption “We therefore assume that 2nd quality mistletoe has few if any berries, in comparison to 1st quality material” is, I would argue, fundamentally flawed.

      1. Just re-read that and realised it didn’t read as being friendly – sorry! Not criticising the main element of your paper, that climate change might be affecting pollinators – but I am taking issue with your assumption that people sell berryless mistletoe at Tenbury – they don’t. Berryless holly yes, but not berryless mistletoe. It’s a basic premise of mistletoe sales that you only sell the stuff with berries. And, if there was even a basic market for mistletoe without berries it would be the male plants being sold – which are plentiful. Plentiful because they’re not cropped because they have no berries.

      2. As you’ll see from the paper, Jonathan, the information about the 2nd class holly having fewer berries came from the auctioneers themselves. We took that information in good faith and assumed that there were significantly fewer berries on the second class material, using the short and “mistletoe without berries”. We have further work on this planned in the future and it would be good to use your expertise in this regard.

        Did you see my other comment about bees as pollinators of mistletoe? I’d be very interested if you have data on that.

  1. Urghh, I made a couple of typos about; it’s 5.30am and I didn’t sleep well last night, so brain is not in gear. The “holly” should of course be “mistletoe” and it should read “short hand”. I need a coffee…..

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