La Unio de Llauradors stated that the town of Cullera (Ribera Baixa) was starting to make the first cuts in open field pumpkin crops in the Valencian territory and in all of Spain this week. This year, and for the second year in a row as a result of the COVID-19 health crisis, people have been unable to celebrate or eat a meal with a menu consisting of products combined with pumpkin.
It should be noted that Cullera has become a focal point for the production of pumpkins in the region of Valencia. In fact, the cultivated area continues to grow and there are already about 300 hectares dedicated to this crop.
There are five different varieties of pumpkin cultivated and the campaign begins with the organically grown Potimarron variety, which is grown on land in the Albufera Natural Park. 80% of the organic pumpkin produced in the Ribera Baixa area is destined for export while practically all the conventional pumpkin is directed to the domestic market. La Unio de Llauradors is committed to promoting the consumption of organic products in the regions, so that consumers can enjoy local food grown without chemicals and so that not all of the production is exported.
The Potimarron variety will be followed by the hybrid Peanut, Piu de burro, and the variety for roasting. As a novelty this year, producers are starting to work with the angel hair squash and there are already talks with agri-food companies to increase production to supply the industry if the tests continue yielding positive results.
The number of farmers interested in producing pumpkin in Cullera is increasing as a result of the region's productive capacity and the interest of the businesses to acquire this product. At the moment, some 10 producers are already professionally dedicated to producing this crop.
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