UPA Andalusia has made an initial estimate of the damage that storm Filomena and the cold wave had on Andalusia's countryside. Eastern Andalusia has been hit the hardest, the organization highlighted.
In the province of Almeria, the intense cold has caused a drop in yields in the production of vegetables in greenhouses and outdoors, as the low temperatures slow down the plants' metabolism. The supply of vegetables, mainly tomatoes, cucumbers, zucchini, and eggplants, has decreased by 30 to 40%, depending on the crop.
The supply shortage is expected to last for a few months and has caused a rise in the price of these crops, partially offsetting the losses due to the drop in production.
The storm, however, also had positive effects for the province of Almeria, as it increased its water reserves; both in the mountain areas due to the melting of the snow that has fallen and because of the rainfall in greenhouse areas further south.
It also delayed the crop's vegetative development in the greenhouse area of Granada. However, the rain and snow in the Granada highlands are beneficial.
In Córdoba, citrus fruits have been affected due to frost. According to the organization, it affected practically 100% of some varieties, such as Sanguinelli, and nearly 50% of other later varieties.
The cold had positive effects on the province's stone fruit crops, which need to accumulate cold hours to develop properly and to produce fruits.
The damage to the subtropical crops of the province of Malaga is currently estimated at around 15%. A more precise balance will only be possible in 7-8 days when temperatures increase and producers can know how much fruit was affected. The damage could increase because there still are more cold days left.
Huelva's strawberry sector fears the blockages caused by the storm in certain areas could affect exports. In addition, the low temperatures are also slowing down the ripening of the strawberry, so the output of the product will slow down.
UPA Andalucia reminded producers of the importance of having agricultural insurance to be covered against inclement weather that may affect their farms.