According to Antonio Carmona, president of the Cordoba-based Professional Citrus Association Palmanaranja, since the start of the COVID-19 outbreak, orange sales have “increased by between 10% and 15%."
Carmona said that the highest growth in sales was recorded shortly before the current state of alarm was decreed, mostly due to hoarding purchases in supermarkets and food stores across the country. Afterwards, sales stabilized, resulting in the aforementioned growth of up to 15% in the sales of oranges from companies linked to Palmanaranja.
Meanwhile, the harvest continues. It is already 85% complete, with “the latest varieties” remaining to be harvested. This will start after Easter and continue until mid-May.
As for the development of the campaign, the president of Palmanaranja said that they have had to deal with "some logistical problems" affecting the mobility of the day laborers, since "no more than two people can travel per vehicle. However, several companies have hired buses where the necessary safety distances are kept between passengers.
In fact, during the current state of alarm, Palmanaranja's main concern, as Antonio Carmona has highlighted, "is to guarantee the health of the workers," both those in the harvest and those responsible for the fruit handling in warehouses, which total about 3,000 taking all associated companies into account."
For the association, it is currently of vital importance to ensure "the supply of fresh and healthy fruit to the markets," so that it reaches the entire population.