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Spain: Stone fruit production in Castilla-La Mancha more than doubles

The production volumes of stone fruit (peach, apricot and plum) in Castilla-La Mancha are expected to surpass 29,000 tonnes, which more than doubles last year's figures.

In their sectorial commission, agri-food cooperatives from Castilla-La Mancha have conducted a production and market analysis for the 2012/2013 campaign, the results of which were made public today.

More specifically, prospects are for 29,202 tonnes of stone fruit to be harvested this season, which is 105.4% more than last year, when the production was of 14,220 tonnes.

The production of yellow peaches will likely reach 17,042 tonnes, which is 49.9% more than in the previous campaign, when 11,370 tonnes were harvested.

The most spectacular rise is in apricots, with 11,160 tonnes, which means a 472.3% increase compared to 2011, when 1,950 tonnes were harvested (the year 2011 was marked by damages caused by frost).

Regarding plums, during the 2012/2013 campaign 1,000 tonnes are expected to be harvested, which means 11.1% more than last year, when 900 tonnes were produced.

Apricots were the fruit with the most problems this campaign. Harvest volumes were very large, and additionally the production of the various varieties and production areas took place in a very short time span, which caused the industry to lack the necessary means to process all this fruit.

This situation, according to the cooperatives' organization, has shown the inability of producers and cooperatives to negotiate nowadays, and that despite complaints about prices below production costs and the two days of halt in the harvesting agreed on during the campaign, things have not improved. 

This year it is worth noting that some apricot plantations, especially the ones that are not in cooperatives, have not done the harvesting due to low prices and the problems encountered by the apricot processing industry.

Source: ABC

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