Frost in France: 500,000 euros lost for the cherry orchards of Fougerolles

Last week’s frost has devastated the cherry trees of Fougerolles (Haute-Saône). Producer Philippe Gallaire has gone around his orchards and declared that “everything is frozen. There is no guarantee; until the beginning of May, it can still freeze, even if this week is warmer. It is not over yet.”

On Wednesday, technicians of the Chamber of Agriculture of Haute-Saône and elected officials from FDSEA visited the cherry orchards to evaluate the damage. 90% of the flowers are destroyed, a loss of more than 500,000 euros [598,747 USD] for the producers for the 2021 season.

According to Nicolas Lemercier, president of the fruit cooperative of Fougerolles, “the 500,000 euro [598,747 USD] threshold has been passed. 300 to 400 tons of cherries (normal production) at 80 cents, 8x5=40, without forgetting the local value of kirsch. I think we are beyond 500,000 euros [598,747 USD] in losses.”

The cherry productions are complementary in this area, so the producers do not qualify for the agricultural disaster funds. “If you produce milk alongside the cherries, for example, you cannot qualify because you do not reach 13% in losses. The cherry production is complementary to the main production which can be milk or meat,” explains Thierry Chalmin, president of the Chamber of Agriculture of Haute-Saône. “We ask that the 13% threshold be reduced to 10% for example, for the particular cases such as Fougerolles. This should help a few more producers qualify.”

Source: francebleu.fr
Photo: © Radio France - Jean-François Fernandez 


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