`Farmers' Group in Spain Criticizes Plan to Support Traditional Olive Growers - Olive Oil Times

Farmers' Group in Spain Criticizes Plan to Support Traditional Olive Growers

By Ephantus Mukundi
May. 6, 2022 12:22 UTC

The Spanish Association of Young Farmers and Ranchers (Asaja) has crit­i­cized the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food’s (MAPA) finan­cial aid plan to sup­port the devel­op­ment of the country’s tra­di­tional olive grow­ers.

Asaja said the fund­ing to make the country’s tra­di­tional groves more com­pet­i­tive is blurred and ridicu­lous” because it tar­gets pro­ducer orga­ni­za­tions and coop­er­a­tives rather than grow­ers.

As long as the tra­di­tional olive groves are not finan­cially aided, they will dis­ap­pear com­pletely. We were wait­ing for some aid to this sec­tor to sur­vive.- Blanca Corroto, pres­i­dent, Asaja-Toledo

Asaja made these asser­tions after ana­lyz­ing the ministry’s plan and con­clud­ing that it was not fit for pur­pose. The orga­ni­za­tion also pre­pared a series of pro­pos­als it intends to send to the min­istry to help improve the inter­ven­tions in the sec­tor.

In their pro­posal, Asaja empha­sized the need for the min­istry to recon­sider its strat­egy for finan­cial aid. Chief among these is increas­ing the amount of money ded­i­cated to the project. Asaja said the pro­posed €30 mil­lion is insuf­fi­cient.

See Also:Spain and Portugal Request European Aid to Fight Ongoing Drought

Given the com­plex­ity of its appli­ca­tion, we are very much afraid this help will end up being lost since, in addi­tion to being lit­tle money, it will not reach those who really need it, “ Asaja said.

Blanca Corroto, the pres­i­dent of Asaja-Toledo, told Agropopular that the €30 mil­lion is an insignif­i­cant amount of money.”

As long as the tra­di­tional olive groves are not finan­cially aided, they will dis­ap­pear com­pletely,” she added. We were wait­ing for some aid to this sec­tor to sur­vive.”

According to data from Juan Vilar Strategic Consultants, Spain has nearly 1.9 mil­lion hectares of tra­di­tional olive groves, which make up slightly more than 70 per­cent of all olive groves in the coun­try.

The sec­tor employs about 350,000 work­ers and gen­er­ates €32 mil­lion in wages annu­ally, mak­ing it a highly valu­able indus­try.

In the new Common Agricultural Policy (CAP), the European Union and MAPA pledged to sup­port the tra­di­tional olive grove in recog­ni­tion of the crit­i­cal role the sec­tor plays in the olive oil indus­try.

Last June, Minister of Agriculture Luis Planas told the sen­ate, we will develop a spe­cific pro­gram because it is very impor­tant for the sector’s abil­ity to com­pete.”



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