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Avocado campaign kicks off in Malaga under the shadow of the second COVID-19 wave

The 2020-2021 avocado campaign started in October in the province of Malaga with the harvest of the earliest greenskin varieties, including the Bacon and Fuerte, which will be followed in mid-November by the Hass, the most common in the province, whose campaign will last until April or May.

Malaga continues to lead in Andalusia in terms of acreage, with some 7,000 hectares, although the crop is expanding strongly in other provinces. The president of the Spanish Tropical Association, Javier Braun, has said that this season, a good part of the new Spanish plantations will become productive. In the last campaign, it was estimated that Malaga and Granada had some 15,000 hectares in their coastal areas, while the Canary Islands have about 1,400 hectares; Huelva, about 1,000; Cádiz, about 800, and the Region of Valencia, between 600 and 800. "Large investments have been made to expand the acreage and some farms will have a lot to say in the coming campaigns," said Braun.

According to the first estimates, the 2020-2021 harvest is expected to be very similar to that of last year, even though rains in the province caused some of the flowers to fall, making pollination difficult. In Andalusia, the harvest in the 2019-2020 campaign reached 81,000 tons.

The situation caused by the pandemic is not good for the market. While sales soared in the retail during the first wave, in this second wave wholesalers are reducing their sales. Uncertainty grows in the sector as the pandemic continues to spread around the world, states of alarm or lockdowns are decreed in different countries and measures are implemented to reduce mobility.

According to Sigfrido Molina, from Sigfrido Fruit, prices are being very good for the growers. The green-skinned varieties have reached 2 Euro per kilo at origin. However, Molina has warned that there are still a lot of avocados from third countries, which isn't good for the local production.

Juan Antonio Reyes, of the Reyes Gutiérrez Group, said during the Spanish campaign, another six producing countries also export to Europe, which takes a toll on sales.

For his part, the manager of Natural Tropic, Prudencio López, has said that in terms of prices, everything points to this not being a bad campaign for the producers, although it is not expected to be as good as the previous one, when Malaga's avocados reached 3 Euro per kilo.



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