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Spain closer to supplying whole berry range year round

The Huelva-based cooperative Cuna de Platero has extended its strawberry season thanks to the crops that are being grown, for the first time, in the province of Avila. Until now, the fruit's production had been carried out exclusively in the fields of Huelva, but now Spanish supermarkets will have this fruit all year round without interruptions.

Juan Báñez, manager of Cuna de Platero, explains that "strawberry production in the area of ​​Avila has been a result of the Global Berry Partner project, which saw the need to supply strawberries for longer in supermarkets by offering strawberries in season all year round to our customers. That's why we planned to start planting in Avila, which has a very favourable climate and conditions for a good harvest, later than the one in southern Spain."

In the words of the manager of Cuna de Platero, "we have strawberries in Huelva from December to June approximately; that is why we had the idea of ​​planting five and a half hectares in Avila, as they would allow us to continue supplying from June to November. As a result, we'll be able to supply the fruit almost all year round."

"The objective was not to look for a business in itself, but to be able to offer the best to our clients. The markets now know that we can supply a quality domestic product all year round and Spanish supermarkets are very happy with the news," says Juan Báñez. "In the period when we'll distribute the strawberries from Avila, there is no competition from other countries, and consumers also like them a lot, because they are different varieties with an exceptional flavour and quality."

This project is mainly aimed at Spanish supermarkets, since the European markets have their own summer fruit during that period. Moreover, the domestic market is demanding increasingly more berries, as their great health benefits are becoming more popular.

In the case of strawberries, the company has its own production throughout the year, but it has also expanded the supply of berries in the off-season with imports from other countries. In raspberries, for example, the preference is to sell its own production, although it has to resort to overseas purchases when stocks run out. In the case of blueberries and blackberries, the company already has an uninterrupted supply thanks to supply from areas such as South America (Chile, Peru or Argentina), Asturias, Portugal, etc. "The Spanish supermarket chains are responding very well to this initiative; they demand a great volume from us," he says.

"The consumption and production of these types of fruits will grow little by little in Spain, since now they are available all year round in supermarkets. We are sure that the campaigns carried out to promote the healthy benefits of berries are having a great impact on consumer choices and, as a result, the consumption is likely to continue growing," says Báñez.

Cuna de Platero is a specialist in the production and marketing of raspberries, with volumes totalling around 2 million kilos of the varieties Adelita, Lupita and Glen Lyon, which are marketed mainly in Spain, but also in the European market. According to Juan Bánez, "things are moving at a slower pace than last year in the European market and with somewhat lower prices, as there is a greater supply, but we think that the season's prospects are good and that the demand may increase in the coming months."

More information:
Begoña Mayoral
Communication Department
Cuna de Platero S.C.A.
Camino de Montemayor s/n.
21800 Moguer, Huelva. Spain

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