The quince harvest started in September in Córdoba, the province with the largest production of this fruit in Spain. This crop is traditionally grown and is important from an economic point of view in the town of Puente Genil, as well as in other municipalities, such as Fuente Palmera, Priego de Córdoba and Carcabuey.
However, the harvest forecasts this season are not very positive. As highlighted in a recent report from the Andalusian Council of Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries and Sustainable Development, this year "the weather has not been beneficial for the crop, as mild winter temperatures have been registered, and due to the lack of rainfall, the production is expected to be lower than in the previous season."
Enrique Chacón, manager of Puente Genil's oldest company devoted to the handling and marketing of this product, Membrillo El Quijote, said that the harvest this campaign, which will finish in November, will be marked by a fall of around 50%, although at the national level the estimated loss will reach 80%.
This means that the harvest will drop to about 4,000 tons, compared to the 8,000 that were recorded in 2019. In his opinion, the low temperatures that were recorded in spring and the hail storms on August 11 are the main causes of this decline.
La Góndola is another of the Pontanense firms specialized in this product and its derivatives. Its manager, Marina Aguilar, also expects the campaign to end with smaller stocks than in other years due to the hailstorm recorded in August, although she also mentioned the lack of rainfall. According to her estimations, the harvest will be reduced by around a third.
She explained that the crop is very expensive for the producer to maintain, although its price at origin this year has doubled, reaching a range of between 0.2 and 0.4 Euro per kilo. The forecast of a smaller harvest and, consequently, a lower supply on the market is the main cause of this increase in prices.