The 2018 season: 2 million tonnes in Extremadura
- François-Xavier Branthôme
- 2018 Season - Read in French
According to information supplied by the federation of Cooperativas Agro-alimentarias Extremadura (Extremaduran Food Industry Cooperatives), supply contracts for the 2018 processing tomato season have been signed for 1 994 113 metric tonnes (mT) in Extremadura. This is a 4% drop compared to results of the 2017 season, when the region's total reached 2 059 783 mT.
The data published by the Extremadura Cooperatives Federation also shows that there has been a 4.3% drop in contract surfaces, which have decreased from 23 579 hectares last year to 22 568 hectares this year. The drop in surfaces planted by cooperatives is not so marked: with 13 761 hectares planted in 2018, this year's surfaces are less than 1% lower than the 13 888 hectares under contract last season. According to these figures, the cooperatives that are part of Cooperativas Agro-alimentarias Extremadura account for approximately 61% of the surfaces used for growing processing tomatoes in the region.
For Domingo Fernández, president of the fruit and vegetables department of the cooperatives' union, "This situation, where we will see a few hectares less dedicated to this crop in Extremadura, will benefit the sector as a whole, because it will not increase inventories and further complicate the market situation. [The situation should] also benefit from a drop in production in Andalusia and Portugal, in both cases because of water shortages."
As for processors, contracts have been signed by Extremaduran companies for 2 030 222 mT, which is 3.3% less than in 2017 (2 098 993 mT), although the volumes harvested ended up being higher than this figure.
The volumes under contract by the four cooperative companies of the region – Carnes y Vegetales, Pronat, Tomalia and Tomates del Guadiana – amount to 773 966 mT, which is 38% of the region's contracts. These quantities, following the pattern observed at the worldwide level, represent a decrease compared to volumes under contract last year (841 632 mT). Processing tomatoes have been planted over surfaces covering 8 687 hectares, or 38% of total surfaces.