Tunisia: Decrease predicted in greenhouse tomato production

Greenhouse tomato production recorded a major decrease at the start of the season which risks having a negative impact on the regions production figures. 

The CRDA (Commission’s Regional Agricultural Development) have predicted that production will only reach 500 tons, compared to 1,500 tons last season. The President of the Greenhouse Producers Group in the Lemgaiess zone explained that such a decrease is caused by plant diseases that are making them unexportable and farmers have lost a lot of yield.

He added that the producers are now leaning towards cucumber production, which risks depleting the earth, especially as there is a lack of agricultural alternation.

The situation has led to a decrease in greenhouses in the Kébili area, where there are currently only 1,500 greenhouses compared to 1,800 two years ago. Ahmed Abdedaïem from the CRDA underlined that tomato production has decreased by two thirds on greenhouse farms.

He also stated that production costs are over double that of cucurbits, yet the prices have dropped on the markets last year which forced farmers to stop growing tomatoes.

The Head of Agriculture denied that diseases in greenhouse plants is the main cause for these predictions, especially with such progress in agricultural research and the ability to cure diseases.

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