The prices of Spanish organic vegetables continue to be high as a result of the storm and frosts recorded in the first days of January, although a falling trend is already observed. "We've had three weeks with very high vegetable prices, especially for cucumbers, zucchini and eggplant. This is the fourth week with such price levels, which are very good for the growers, although they are beginning to fall as the supply goes back to normal levels,” says Fernando Martín, manager of the Motril-based cooperative Bio Procam, specialized in the production and marketing of organic fruits and vegetables.
“It should be recalled that since the cucumber campaign started in September, and up until the end of December, cucumber prices were historically low. On the one hand, the acreage planted with cucumbers was expanded, to the detriment of tomatoes, which continue to lose ground in Almería and Granada. On the other hand, in the months of October and November the temperatures were higher than usual, which caused the production process to accelerate, coinciding with the impact of the coronavirus on the market. The closure of the Horeca, among other restrictions, has taken a huge toll on vegetable sales. I think that, despite the fact that cucumber prices have been exorbitant in January, the final average of the campaign will continue to be low,” says the Bio Procam manager.
Pepper prices have remained more stable throughout the season, as this crop is less sensitive to changes in the temperature. Meanwhile, the average price of tomatoes has stood above last season's, even before the frosts. "After two very difficult seasons, tomato prices are better this year, but they are still at the edge of profitability for the producers," says Fernando Martín.
The organic avocado campaign will end earlier in Granada
The abundant rains, winds and low temperatures during the avocado's flowering stage have had an impact on the avocado production on the Tropical Coast of Granada, where Bio Procam grows its avocados and mangoes.
"This year's organic avocado harvest is between 30 and 40% lower than last year's, despite the fact that we have new plantations becoming productive every year," says Fernando Martín. “This is mainly why avocados have become somewhat more expensive. The campaign will end sooner. In mid-February, volumes will begin to drop and my estimate is that, as of April, there will hardly be any supply left.”