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Spain: Melon campaign marked by price variability
Approximately one month before the end of the melon production campaign, Cooperativas Agroalimentarias Castile-La Mancha is taking stock of the campaign in the region, 80% of which has been completed, and which has been marked by price variation. These started very low and, at this time, are at profitable levels for the producers.
This was reported by José Ángel Serrano, a spokesperson for Melons and Watermelons of Cooperativas and president of Cooperativa Santiago Apóstol de Tomelloso, in Ciudad Real. He said that "we have a month of production ahead, until mid-October, and although prices are now at a profitable level for the producers, the campaign has had the worst start of the last two decades."
The reason for those low prices at the start of the campaign was the overlap between the campaigns of Murcia and Castile-La Mancha. "The region Murcia came from a poor campaign, with low prices, and overlapping with us caused the market to become saturated, with the consequent low prices."
However, as the campaign has developed, prices have been on the rise. "This year, there has been an upward trend lasting for a couple of weeks with very good prices, from approximately 20 August until early September," explains José Ángel Serrano.
Current melon prices stand between 0.27 and 0.30 Euro/kilo for the first class and between 0.38 and 0.40 Euro/kilo for the extra quality ones.
These prices do benefit the producer, "but it is also true that we have come to this situation because of a shortage of melons. There was little production and some growers opted for early varieties and that has caused them to lose money, because there was little demand for these varieties and a very large production."
Regarding exports, "it has been one of the most atypical years, with little demand from foreign countries, mostly due to the weather conditions."
The spokesperson also asked supermarkets "to allow prices to be good or profitable for the producer, because the promotions they launch negatively affect everyone in the production chain."
Publication date: 9/27/2017
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