Mandarin crisis hits farmers around Benidorm area

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THE financial crisis has affected every person and business across the country and none more so than in the agricultural sector.

Farmers in the Marina Alta area are leaving mandarins on the tress rather than collect them as they are being offered less than €1 per crate… and a crate holds 19.5kg.

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They literally cannot afford to harvest the fruit as they have to pay people more to pick the fruit than what they receive for it.

On top of the cost of irrigating the land they also have the overheads of spraying crops with insecticides so the farmers are leaving the fruit to rot on the tress instead.

“There are no buyers for the fruit – export to the European market has dried up with the economic crisis. There is good production but it is a difficult market” said Ximo Hall, commercial Director of the Coopego.

It is a terribly sad sight to see especially as there is a bumper crop this year due to the exceptionally good weather and these varieties of Clemenvilla are particularly sweet.

Its a shame that the farmers do not offer PYO – Pick your Own – as they do in the UK with strawberries and other seasonal fruit.

But many of the farmers are contracted to the Coop so even if they wanted to they would be unable to do so.

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