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Nabil Belmkaddem, BestBerry:

“Storm will have an important impact on Moroccan berry exports”

During the night of 28th February to 1st March a violent storm hit the north of Morocco. Fruit that is grown in plastic tunnels and greenhouses, especially red fruit, has been damaged. Assessment on damage is still going on and will be communicated by the authorities. According to Nabil Belmkaddem, General Manager at the Moroccan cooperative BestBerry, this will have an impact on all berry exports out of Morocco for the end of the season. Nabil: “I guess by the end of this season we’ll see a decrease in strawberry exports by 50% for the March and early April production window”

Nabil: “The storm was unique because it lasted all night long. Even the next morning we experienced some fierce gusts of wind. The tunnels fell down on the fruit and devastated the plants. Besides, there’s some heavy rainfall which makes the fruit inappropriate for export. Right now we are waiting for the rain to stop and hope to save a part of our harvest.” 

The plastic foil greenhouses damaged the strawberry plants

Apart from strawberries, growers of BestBerry cooperative grow raspberries and blueberries. “Raspberry plants are already susceptible to pests and diseases. The storm and rainfall did not improve their prospects. We’ve seen some blueberry plants being uprooted by the wind.”

The uprooted blueberry plants

The storm will especially affect exports from the northern provinces of Larache and Kenitra. 

For more information: 
Cooperative BestBerry
14 Rue Youssef Ibn Tachfine 

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