Frutícola Empordá is making its debut in the Tessa apple club with its first commercial plantations
After several years of trials, the Catalan company is starting a pilot scheme for the next five years with the apple variety Tessa. “The trials carried out in our area, at sea level, have shown us very correct results and there is even an improvement regarding sugar levels, which has surprised us all,” Miquel Roig, Manager of the entity, comments.
Fruticola Empordà is joining the club of this Italian apple formed by the following different European companies: Melinda, La Trentina, Valentina VM, JollyCoop, FruitMasters, SudtirolerObstversteigerung, KropflObsthandel, BB Fruchyhandel and EVA.
Unlike the general trend, with a 16% drop in production throughout Catalonia, the entity will increase its volume by around 10% and will approach 20 million kilos.
After six years of important investments in the head offices, the executive indicates that “we are entitled to a breathing space; however, there will always be transformations to be made, although they are not as significant as the ones already carried out.” It is worth remembering that the structural refurbishment undertaken covered many aspects, from the building of rooms with dynamic atmosphere using the ACR system, unique in Spain, to the new packaging and pre-grading lines, without forgetting the changeover to plastic pallets.
Accordingly, this year the photovoltaic panels installed on the main buildings will start working, with a contribution of 650 kilowatts/hour, the equivalent to a 30% saving in mains energy, and that at times of maximum production allows the premises to be self-sufficient.
With respect to the innovations in the fields, the installation of humidity sensors on the farms stands out. These use a computing system to collect data that is crossed with information from the weather stations and establishes irrigation recommendations for the trees. This system, which allows up to 25% of water to be saved, has been established for the three fruit and vegetable growing centres belonging to the PGI Poma de Girona, and has advisory services from the Mas Badía centre.