Agrícola Navarro de Haro will produce 1,000 t less of this product and it will continue reducing the surface area if prices do not improve.
“It is a decisive year for us. If the campaign does not turn out as we hope, we will continue reducing volume until we reach the moment when tomatoes will disappear from our portfolio.” This is the uncompromising statement by the company’s manager, José Alonso Navarro, fed up of the situation tomatoes are experiencing. In 2019/20 they produced around 6,000 tonnes and for this year they have programmed 5,000 t. A significant drop. The company’s plan of action includes “putting all our efforts into optimising all the processes, from planting until the produce leaves our warehouse,” but if this doesn’t give the expected results, next campaign they will reduce the surface area again. “In my opinion, the future is complicated. I think that all the other producers are in the same boat. We have been producing tomatoes all our lives and it is a product that has always been present in my company, but the last few years have been very, very tough and we cannot allow the company to carry on for long like this.”
Currently 50% of its production is made up of plum tomatoes. “More and more clients are asking for them. The variety that we produce has exceptional quality; it can be used for everything and it lasts very well.”
To cover the gap left by tomatoes, they are carrying out trials with different products to study their quality and profitability. One of the products they incorporated a few campaigns ago is potted aloe vera. “We are increasing production year by year, and little by little we are raising our market share. It is interesting.”
In a year that is particularly complicated due to the pandemic, José Alonso Navarro assures that “the certainty is that this sector is the only one that cannot stop. We produce necessary food and this is what makes us move forward.” All the improvements that are being carried out are focused on prevention: they have modified work lines and they have changed the positions of the machinery to ensure that the workers are safer. “We employ many people and we have to give them work all year long.”