Yesterday, the Senate approved the additional provision that guarantees recognition of the singularities of the Canarian banana within the framework of the new Food Chain Law.
The banana sector of the Canary Islands began a fundamental claim process for its continuity in March of 2020. The well-intentioned Food Chain Law did not initially address the specificities of the banana as a crop in the Outermost Regions, nor did it address its market, which was subject to unequal competition from third-country bananas.
If the Canarian Banana sector complied with the general criteria of the standard as it was, it would be unable to market up to 90% of its production because of the effects of a minimum price by default in its operations, and the non-consideration of its specific aid regime and ripening process, which is unique to this fruit. These three elements have been taken into account in the additional provision that was approved in the Congress of Deputies during the reform of the Law in September and that the Senate declared valid today.
The sector will thus have the possibility of ensuring an annual average price above the cost of production in all its sales, thereby avoiding the refusal of its customers to buy bananas due to the bananas' market price, which is strongly conditioned by the commercial practices of the banana multinationals.
The Senate's approval brings relief to the sector, especially because this provision was supported by all the groups in the House. “The approval of this provision is a collective success for the entire sector and for many political and civil society organizations that helped us address a specificity issue for the good of the sector and of the whole Canary Islands," stated Domingo Martin, the president of Asprocan.
The approval of this norm will not prevent the banana from having to compete against the continuous banana imports that do not meet the same norms and sink prices without limit, but it does manage the Canarian banana to avoid a scenario of irremediable disappearance if it wasn't approved. The sector will continue to demand equal conditions for the different plantain and banana marketers as well as putting an end to commercial practices in distribution that affect bananas in favor of imports.
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