Frutas y HortalizasJul. 27, 2016
España cosechará un 30% menos de fruta de hueso por las tormentas veraniegas
Summer storms and hail have damaged many crops in Extremadura, such as rice, corn or tomatoes, and have also hit fruit plantations in this region and some specific parts of Aragon, as reported by sources of the agricultural organizations.
In Extremadura, storms and hail “fell sharply this month and caused damage” in irrigated areas of Badajoz, as reported by the Young Farmers Agricultural Association (ASAJA).
They added, however, that “a high share” of these productions are insured, which brings “peace of mind” and will ensure that the impact of the losses will be reduced.
In Merida, Cooperativas Agro-alimentatias de Extremadura and the UPA-UCE have agreed to propose improvements in agricultural insurances to make the process more effective when dealing with storms, as explained in a statement.
As for the extreme heat, the agricultural sector shows no concern, as is typical of this time, after a winter in which temperatures were in fact abnormally high, which sparked great fears.
As regards stonefruit, it is common in summer for intermittent rainfall or hail to be recorded in the Ebro valley.
The Secretary General of the Union of Farmers and Ranchers of Aragon (UAGA-COAG), Jose Manuel Penella, mentioned “two instances”: the latest storms, which affected the region of Calatayud (Zaragoza) a few days ago at the beginning of the fruit’s harvest and a previous one in Bajo Cinca, with occasional damage in some municipalities.
Regarding the latter, he mentioned that the rain “cracked” the cherries, which reduced their market quality. Another consequence, according to Penella, has been the loss of some buyers (both Spanish and foreign) due to shortages in the fruit’s supply.
At national level, the head for stonefruit at COAG, David Borda, reports that with the exception of Extremadura, which was affected by storms, the summer has so far been generally “quieter” than last year on the farms of Aragon and Catalonia, and in terms of volume, the climate has not actually taken a significant toll.
However, Borda said that the Spanish stonefruit harvest will be between 20% and 30% smaller than in 2015, due to the anomalous winter, with excessive heat in December and January and “late frosts” recorded when the fruit was already on the tree.
This happened especially in the early areas, such as Andalusia and Murcia, where, according to Borda, the fall in harvest volumes could range between 30% and 40%.