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Looting of fields, greenhouses and warehouses
Spain: Increase in thefts of greenhouse vegetables in Almeria
The arrival of the cold and the increase in prices of some products has led to a continuous increase in the number of thefts over time that is causing great concern among Almerian farmers, mainly those located in the western region of Almeria, as they have been the most affected by this issue.
Tonight, several farms will suffer new robberies with the same modus operandi: the thieves break the greenhouse's insulation and use the boxes and carts they find in the location to retrieve the crops. "In most cases, the thieves don't damage the produce because they are harvesting the vegetables without harming the plants. However, the thieves that stole from Pedro did destroy some plants," stated Andres Gongora, the provincial secretary of COAG Almeria.
"I have 9,000 meters of greenhouses and thieves have stolen around 4,000 kilos of eggplant. They made a vertical cut in the insulation, cut some wires, damaged some plants, and left a lot of eggplants on the floor. They stole small, medium and large eggplants. They even took some that were still missing a few weeks to be ready for harvest," Pedro Martinez said and asked the authorities "To increase vigilance in rural areas because we can't cope with robberies now that the products have a good price."
The agrarian organization said "the farmers can't work by day and guard their farms at night. We have requested an urgent meeting with the sub delegate, the Civil Guard, and the Roca Groups because we have to address this situation immediately. The fields need more people guarding them and we will continue to demand them. We would also like to remind farmers to report any crimes, for as often as it's necessary, even if the thieves steal something small or damage something meaningless so that the Administration has real data."
Finally, the COAG called again on marketers, farmers, and traders to report any suspicious activity that could be a crime. "We all have to be alert and help catch the thieves who are looting the fields, the greenhouses, and the warehouses," Gongora concluded.
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