Argentina: Mendoza expects to have a good cherry production, but small calibers

Cherry cultivation is growing in Mendoza and the harvest forecast for this year is really auspicious, although producers have their reserves.

According to the harvest forecast prepared by the Rural Development Institute (IDR), this year, the production of fresh cherries will amount to 5,901 tons in 688 hectares, well above the 2,035 tons estimated in 2015. Last year the IDR didn't make this estimate.

According to technical data, the Uco Valley will harvest around 4,816 tons in ​​514 hectares, mainly of the Bing variety. It is followed by the North, which is expected to produce close to 850 tons in less than 150 hectares.

However, producers think that the harvest won't be as important as expected. Alberto Carletti, the president of the Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Agriculture of Tunuyan, said he didn't believe the forecast.

"We have small caliber cherries. The production is good, there are many crops that have an excess of load, and that can be a problem for the market, because the export market does not accept them, you just can't send small fruits," he said.

Another problem, he said, is that the industrial sector has a stock of cherries from previous years, so there won't be an important demand for this fruit this year.

Pablo Manitta, an administrator of a farm in the northern zone of Mendoza that is already ending its harvest, said they had had an average production. He said production in 2015 had been very small, and that in 2016 it had been extraordinary. Thus, neither of them can be taken as reference years.


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