Asaja Almeria stated on Friday that the prices of zucchini, aubergine, and cucumber collapsed at the beginning of April. The organization said prices had started to fall last week, but that their fall had become much more abrupt in recent days, as prices at source barely exceed 10-11 cents on average.
"It's true that the prices of these productions generally decrease after Easter and during the month of April because other areas productions enter the market, however, these prices are more than 50% below than usual," stated the president of the entity, Antonio Navarro.
According to data from the technical services of Asaja-Almeria, the fall has been especially hard for Almeria's cucumber, which experienced a 67% drop in one week. It was followed by zucchini with a 47% drop and aubergine with a 38% fall. "These are the three products with the worst prices, which average 10 to 12 cents. This is unsustainable as current prices are well below the average they usually register in the month of April," the organization stated.
Asaja attributes this situation to the strong production there is, for example of zucchini, the existing competition in other producing areas, and imports. "Even though we are in the final stretch of the Almerian cucumber or eggplant campaign, it is true that there is a little more product this spring. This is especially notable in the case of zucchini, one of the productions that farmers bet on this spring to the detriment of the tomato."
Asaja insisted on the importance of planning as a fundamental part of the campaign strategy. "It's true, we can't control all the factors that influence prices at origin. However, the instability and high ups-and-downs don't benefit any of the members of the chain."
The organization demanded measures to avoid these collapses that have forced farmers to sell below production costs for weeks. "Farmers are being paid ten cents for their products and that isn't enough to sustain a greenhouse vegetable farm," they stated.