The cooperative from Las Pedroñeras is extending its range with this new reference
They serve their customers all year round and at the request of some of them, they have developed a new reference that is being commercially launched this summer: Ajo Santo Negro (Black Saint Garlic). This home-grown produce is added to the ones they already have, such as purple garlic, spring garlic (violet and white) and national white garlic.
The company has a “constant and significant” production that has reached around 15 million kilos over the past 5 years, where purple garlic makes up approximately 50% of its total volume, solely marketed under the PGI Ajo Morado from Las Pedroñeras. “We are trying to defend the produce, our garlic is 100% from La Mancha and we guarantee that people look for it,” comments Mª José Arellano, manager of San Isidro El Santo. Amongst its projects is the production of virus-free seeds to hand over to its partners.
During the campaign over 200 workers can work in its warehouse, and between 160 and 170 people work there throughout the year. Virtually everything is done by hand, even the peeling, head by head, with a 90% female labour force.
“We control everything ourselves, from the sowing until the produce is despatched to the customer. We even have our own laboratory created exclusively to support our partners with analyses of soil, water, follicular… Although we also serve others who seek out our know-how. We also have several certificates: Globalgap, BRC and IFS, as well as the PGI,” Arellano states.
Nationally, they work directly with Mercadona and with wholesalers, as well as from their online store to reach the general public. Most of their production is sent abroad, where, depending on the year, they market up to 70% of the total, mainly in Europe. “We work with the USA, Canada, Australia, Japan, Brazil… The price is given by the market, but we always try to find trusted clients who sell our produce as if it were their own.”