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Spain: Union warns of a 26% drop in citrus prices

The "Unió de Llauradors" alerted today for the fact that citrus prices in the 2011-2012 campaign are 26% lower than in the previous campaign, reflecting according to them, that the new season will be "disastrous" for producers in the Valencia Community.

According to their note, liquidations received by farmers for their citrus "are even lower" than the official prices, published by the Council of Agriculture.

In that sense, they recall that since the 2003-2004 campaign, "apart from small recoveries", prices in the Valencian citrus sector "are going down with losses getting bigger and bigger for citrus producers and a consequent abandoning of the fields that is threatening to get wider and form a big brown spot".

Studies made by "La Unió" point to Valencian citrus producers "not receiving 222 million Euro due to the drop in prices year after year".

Moreover, they pointed out that frosts from the last years and the one from last February "just made it worst", as in some areas they will need to "replant trees to keep the exploitations", with "no kind of help from the local and central government being planned".

February's frost affected more than 29,000 parcels in a area of 25,364 hectares. More than 14,900 insurance policies were presented after it. To add up still the parcels that were not insured.

The secretary general for the Union, Ramón Mampel, assured that the situation for the citrus producers in Valencia is "really dramatic and unsustainable". He already called for "support from administrations and the union to avoid having it worst for a sector that was on top and now can be gone in a short time".

In that sense, he asked the Council of Agriculture to be "agile" when taking conclusions in the next coming months in order to adopt correcting measures for the next campaign.

Source: Finanzas.com

Publication date: 4/20/2012


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