Gran Canaria tomato acreage reduced by 76% in 10 years

The acreage for tomato cultivation in Gran Canaria has dropped by 76% in the past decade, from 3,000 hectares to the current 720. "The situation for the tomato sector has been very tough in recent years, with the recession contributing to the bankruptcy of cooperatives such as La Orilla, Lupema, San Rafael de Vecindario and Valerón," stated the president of Asaja, Roberto Góiriz. 

Góiriz pointed out that the tomato acreage in the Islands has gone from 5,000 hectares to just 1,200 hectares. Production volumes have dropped from 400,000 kilos 10 years ago to 100,000 kilos this season.

In any case, the number of hectares for the coming campaign is said to be similar to last season's, as confirmed, not just by Góiriz, but also by the agronomists from SAT Bonny and Yeoward Cooperative, Julián Ortiz and Jordi Olivares, respectively.

Nevertheless, the president of Colican Cooperative, Antonio León, stated that his partners reduced their plantations by around 25% "due to issues with the financial aid and transport compensations and Morocco's competition. Those of us who have always devoted ourselves to this crop do not like this situation, but if we do not find solutions, we may have to close," added León. Colican has gone from 40 hectares last season down to 30 hectares.

"The situation is critical and unsustainable; we demand solutions for a sector which is a heritage for the South East and which is not receiving as much attention as other sectors," affirmed the mayor of Agüimes, Antonio Morales. An opinion shared by the mayor of Santa Lucía, Dunia González, who was critical about the delays in the financial aid and compensations.


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