According to the claims reports received by Agroseguros, the abrupt drop in temperatures and frosts recorded during the weekend of March 19 to 21 in Spain affected nearly 38,000 hectares that were insured, which were distributed among more than 31,100 parcels, mostly of fruit, almond, and wine grape crops. According to the insurance company, the compensation estimate amounts to 55 million euro. Different autonomous communities were affected, but Lleida, Huesca, and Albacete recorded the greatest damage.
Most of the 8,800 insured hectares that were affected in Catalonia are located in Lleida and mainly grew fruit trees, such as peach, pear, apple, or apricot. According to a first provisional estimate, the compensation could exceed 15 million euro in the affected areas in the province, the most outstanding of which were the regions of Segria and Noguera.
Agroseguro estimates that the insured area affected in Aragon stands at 8,200 hectares, mostly in the regions of Litera and Bajo Cinca, in Huesca, although there was also damage in La Almunia or Calatayud. Stone fruit, especially peaches and almonds, were the most affected productions. However, the drop in temperatures also affected pear, apple, and cherry crops.
In Castilla-La Mancha, the frosts affected more than 11,800 insured hectares. The most affected crops there were almond crops. In the province of Albacete alone, this crop registered damage in more than 8,000 hectares, as well as another 1,100 hectares in Ciudad Real, 800 in Toledo, and almost 500 in Cuenca. The low temperatures affected peaches and apricots in Albacete to a lower extent.
The frost also affected more than 4,000 insured hectares in Extremadura, mainly of wine grape, apricot, and plum crops from Badajoz, but also almond crops; the main production affected in Caceres.
The frosts also affected eastern Andalusia. In Granada and Almeria, the damage to almond trees exceeds 3,000 hectares.
Currently, more than a hundred professionals are working on the valuation of damages to speed up appraisals and the payment of compensation, Agroseguro stated. The entity highlighted that the damages caused by these atmospheric phenomena are covered by the agricultural insurance system, so it is important to hire them to be protected.