Despite the citrus pickers’ strike in the Valencian Community, marketing activities continue with relative normality

On December 16, the citrus pickers’ union resumed an indefinite strike in the Valencian community after another disagreement with employers over the sector’s collective bargaining agreement.

The Citrus Control Board, which primarily represents employers, declined to make a statement on the first day of the strike, but most operators in the sector interviewed said their levels of pickers responding to the call to strike were so high. I also agree that it did not.

Information picket in the field. Image published by CC. OO’s Twitter feed.

The citrus sector is going through a rough patch as crops so far are well below expectations at the start of the campaign due to pests and rain losses. Abundant rainfall in most areas has significantly reduced activity in rural areas.

“At the moment, the strike has had some impact on the harvest, but the strike only started hours ago, so the impact of the rains in the last few days on the Valencian community is more pronounced than the strike.” said Nacho Juarez, Citrus Sales Division at . “We noticed that calls to strike were answered more appropriately in the province of Castellon, which produces the most clementines and tangerines, and to a lesser extent in the interior of Valencia.”

Pickets at The Natural Fruit packaging plant on the morning of December 16th. Image published by CC. OO’s Twitter feed.

The strike will be conducted in some areas to stop trucks from entering and exiting the facility, and through pickets that prevent collection at the doors of some citrus handling and packaging plants. No violent altercations have been reported so far. When they heard the call to strike, many cooperatives and production and marketing companies stocked up their warehouses. As a result, marketing efforts have continued relatively normally.

Compared to other Spanish producing regions, the Valencian Community has a higher proportion of clementines and mandarins, so a prolonged strike could lead to a shortage of these products in the market, but an oversupply in itself. not.

“The majority of our Christmas supply program has already been sent to destinations in Central and Northern Europe due to the expected problems from rainfall and strikes. There’s a lot of tension,” Nacho said. Juarez said. “Continued rainfall is affecting the quality and maturation process of clementines. Clemenus in particular is ending early due to a significant decline. Autumn temperatures are warmer than normal, increasing the presence of pests. Production has dropped significantly, and technically it’s been a rather complicated year at the field level.

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