The National Garlic Table held in Las Pedroñeras (Cuenca) discussed the reduction of production, drought, and the alleged fraudulent entry of frozen garlic from China into the European Union.
Carmen Quintero, the provincial secretary of COAG Córdoba, said that despite having no water, Andalusian garlic producers had started the campaign and planted the garlic. "The crops are subsisting as well as they can thanks to the latest rains. However, if producers are not given water they can no longer guarantee the crop's survival. In fact, they could lose all of the production."
The planting of garlic has decreased by 20% on average in Spain for this year's campaign. This reduction has been more marked in Andalusia, which decreased its area by 50% over the previous year, because of the drought.
As a result of the restrictions on water use due to the drought, garlic producers in irrigable areas have been unable to water their crops and the crops are dying. This water stress will have an impact on development and all of the crops may be lost.
The National Garlic Table also discussed the alleged fraudulent entry of frozen garlic from China into the European Union.
The volume of frozen garlic between 2017 and 2022 was very high, and the sector suspects that the product should be cataloged as fresh garlic and not as frozen garlic.
Frozen garlic must be transported at minus twenty degrees celsius and it seems that the product entering the EU as frozen garlic is being transported at minus three degrees, so it should be cataloged as fresh garlic. These two products have two different tariff classifications. Tariffs on frozen garlic imports are lower than on fresh garlic imports.
Andalusia is the second largest garlic-producing community in Spain, and the province of Cordoba accounts for 36% of the area planted in this community and 35% of its garlic production. It is followed by the provinces of Seville and Granada, which account for 24% and 17% of the area and 28% and 15% of Andalusian garlic production, respectively. The provinces of Málaga and Jaén account for 14% and 6% of the planted hectares, as well as 12% and 8% of Andalusian production.