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TOMATOES: Last year 100 thousand kilos of the fruit thrown at festival. TOMATOES: Last year 100 thousand kilos of the fruit thrown at festival.

Paying the price for tomato fest

ORGANISERS of the annual Tomatina festival in Buñol, Valencia, are to charge €10 for people wanting to participate.

The event, which last year saw 100,000 kilos of tomatoes thrown by the crowds, is proving more and more popular.  In 2012 it attracted nearly 50,000 people, a figure that, according to deputy mayor of Buñol, Rafael Perez, “was not viable.”

In a bid to make the event safer for residents and visitors, a capacity limit of between 20,000 and 22,000 people is to be introduced this year.  After speaking with neighbours, it was decided the best way to enforce this limit was to introduce a fee.

Perez insists that the intention of the Council is to make the Tomatina, which is now an international tourist attraction with world-wide media coverage, a party that is “safe” for all participants to enjoy.

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