Guatemala evaluates agricultural losses caused by the volcano

The Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Food (MAGA) is evaluating the agricultural losses caused by the eruption of the Fuego volcano in the village of El Rodeo and nearby communities in the southern department of Escuintla, stated an official source.

"The MAGA is conducting a survey regarding agricultural losses. It is being carried out with the farmers who are in the shelters," said Eduardo Mendizabal, adviser to the portfolio in Escuintla.

He stressed that they would evaluate the damage to crops and animal production. The Guatemalan News Agency (AGN) corroborated that 47 MAGA extension agents are gathering the information in all the shelters.

The census began on Tuesday, June 5, two days after the strong eruption that left at least 110 people dead and 1.7 million affected in Escuintla, Sacatepequez, and Chimaltenango.

"Today we implemented a new format to help gather more information. This will allow us to determine agricultural and animal losses," Mendizabal stated.

Preliminary Data
According to the official, there were crops of banana, coffee, maxan leaves (which are used to wrap tamales), fruit trees, vegetables, corn, and multiple family gardens in El Rodeo, San Miguel Los Lotes, and the surrounding communities.

The data collected will be preliminary because they will only obtain final information once they can enter the area affected. He also said that they had been unable to reach the sector because of the rains and strong lahars.

The extension agents of the MAGA that are conducting the census said that they have collected data from farmers from San Miguel Los Lotes, La Trinidad, La Reinga, and from the community of Don Pancho, among other places.


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