We can say potatoes are lost in the areas hit by the flood in Emilia Romagna (Ravenna, Forlì-Cesena and Bologna provinces), as 24 hours under water are more than enough to destroy the crops. The situation is not much better when it comes to red onions, even though they are sturdier.
"At least 2000 hectares were flooded around the Idice river in Medicina (Bologna), where there are lots of potato, onion and industry tomato crops," reports producer Alberto Zambon.
The area flooded by the Idice river in Medicina (Bologna)
Zambon confirms that the areas that were not flooded but where water stagnated due to the abundant rain are still to be monitored, as issues could appear after 6-7 days. Onions are sturdier and should recover in these areas.
"Our forefathers used to say that 'misery arrives by boat' - which means flood and abundant out-of-season rain are the first cause of problems for producers, as confirmed by the current situation."
"Unfortunately, the water system in the region - as probably in the rest of Italy - has seen little improvements over the past 50 years, while built-up areas have increased a lot. The entire drainage system should be improved not only for this emergency, but to deal with normal conditions as well."