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South-central Italy: price agreement signed - Updated

21/06/2019 - François-Xavier Branthôme - 2019 Season - Read in French
The average reference price has been fixed at EUR 95 /mT for round tomatoes and EUR 105 /mT for oblong tomatoes

After long negotiations, the ANICAV and the POs of the south-central region of Italy reached a framework agreement for the management of next season's tomato processing campaign.
The agreement includes confirmation of the regulatory aspects of the 2018 contract, and fixes the average reference price at EUR 95 /mT for round tomatoes and EUR 105 /mT for oblong tomatoes. So prices have increased approximately 9% for tomatoes intended for paste production and 8% for those intended for canned tomato production. 

 According to ANICAV President Antonio Ferraioli: "Stakeholders behaved responsibly.  Despite the difficult situation of the industry at the moment, we have observed a significant increase in the price compared to last season, in order to help growers overcome various obstacles. The agreement should be a stimulant for relaunching the interbranch organization, which not only encourages the integration process of the industry as a whole, but also guarantees compliance with regulations and focuses attention on the issue of ethical sustainability. "

"We are quite happy with the agreements obtained thanks to the commitment of all the stakeholders and to the sensitivity with which processors have considered the issues that growers have to face," stated Italia Ortofrutta President Gennaro Velardo. "This agreement protects growers whilst validating a price that allows them to maintain sufficient profitability. We hope that as from next season, with the commitment of all stakeholders of the industry in the south-central region, it will be possible to agree on the framework contract within the time-frame determined by the IO, in order to guarantee the correct programming of volumes." 

In an interview given mid-May, the Italia Ortofrutta President insisted on the fact that "the world of processing tomatoes does not need to develop in terms of the volumes it produces, [because it is] already able to satisfy market demand. What is needed is for it to increase the added-value of the products. In other words, it is time to introduce change in this industrial sector. It is necessary to implement agronomic techniques that will allow growers to achieve higher quality standards, which in turn will have a positive effect on pricing. It is necessary to consolidate the planning stage as well as clustered ripening of the crops.

"In order to guarantee a higher revenue for the growers that we represent, we need to work on a more rational planning approach for the crops, in order to avoid peaks in production and the gluts that occur in processing plants. We are also seeking workable management techniques that will allow us to reduce production costs." 
"But even more than price, we need to focus on guaranteeing ethical revenue, for the industry as a whole, from growers to the final consumers who need to be educated in order to know how to recognize the good and fair value of an ethical product."

Commenting on the agreement, the President of the Alleanza Agroalimentari cooperative, Giorgio Mercuri, stated: "This is a significant step forward in the right direction towards enhancing the value of peeled tomatoes, which represent 65% of all the tomatoes grown in the South of the country." 

Source: Freshplaza

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