While the autumn/winter tomato campaign begins to take shape in many of Almeria's greenhouses with the harvest of this year's earliest plantations in which there is a generalized delay, Granada still maintains the supply that has served the market throughout summer.
"Production in Granada has decreased a little as temperatures are falling, but we expect to continue production for more than a month. In spring, the campaign was delayed a bit due to the rains, which will allow us to extend the campaign a little longer than expected now that prices are good, "stated Francisco Manuel Ramos of Hortoventas.
"August was very good in that regard. In September, prices have remained stable, and we expect they'll continue this way in the coming weeks. It all depends on the quality of each farmer's production, but right now, we are starting sales at between 1.40 and 1.50 euros per kilo."
"In the province, we only have a planting cycle that goes from the end of May to, at most, November, when the cold weather starts and we have to finish the crops. In winter, temperatures here drop to 8-9 degrees below zero, so it's very complicated to produce during that period, even though we produce our tomatoes in greenhouses."
In summer, Spain receives tomatoes from other European countries. "We get some volumes from the Netherlands, overlapping somewhat with our production, and also from Portugal, which exports more to the Spanish market, especially red branch tomatoes, and Daniela tomatoes, but we all have our space in both the national and export markets," Francisco Manuel said.
In winter, Hortoventas will continue to grow cauliflower and cabbage, two products that it can also supply in summer -when other Spanish-producing areas can't grow them because of the hot weather- thanks to the temperatures and the microclimate provided by the foothills between the Sierra Nevada and the Llano de Zafarraya. However, this is not the only advantage provided by this climate. "We know that many producers in Almeria are being affected by the tomato virus, which is very difficult to eliminate because it develops easily with the heat inside the greenhouses. Fortunately, in winter, the temperature here falls below zero, cutting the life cycle of the virus, so we're not as affected by it as other areas."
For more information:
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18125 Ventas de Zafarraya, Granada (España)
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