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HomeSpainCosta BlancaCrisis in Lemon Farming Pushing Alicante Farmers to Abandon Fields

Crisis in Lemon Farming Pushing Alicante Farmers to Abandon Fields

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Farmers in Alicante, Spain, are facing a severe crisis in lemon farming, leading many to consider abandoning their fields. The president of ASAJA Alicante, José Vicente Andreu, highlighted that the issues are significantly acute in the Vega Baja region, where 40% of the national lemon production is concentrated. The crisis stems from an inability to commercially distribute the lemons, with some farmers unable to even harvest the citrus from the trees due to prohibitive costs.

The root causes of this crisis include increased competition from lemon imports, particularly from Turkey, due to existing trade agreements, as well as unfair trade practices and adverse weather conditions affecting the crops. Moreover, ASAJA Alicante criticizes the government and the EU for imposing regulations that seemingly contradict the interests of the agricultural sector. In response, the association urges the Conselleria de Agricultura to launch a specialized emergency plan to support lemon farmers. This plan should encompass direct aid for those who have lost their harvest, specific financing lines, and tax relief measures.

The association also calls for ensuring compliance with the Food Chain Law to prevent abuse, proposing a decree for direct aid related to weather-induced damages not covered by insurance, and suggests fiscal benefits and EU ‘minimis’ aid to address market-caused issues stemming from geopolitical conflicts.

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