Mercamadrid is moving forward, but not enough

In 2021, Mercamadrid maintained its marketing figures which, overall, reached 3,157,505 t of produce, but some essential questions regarding its future are still hanging in the balance.

The main problem concerns the renewal of the market’s administrative grant that ends on the fast-approaching date of 2032 and that is keeping company investments at a standstill. Another of the subjects up for debate that seems to be going on for ever and that is causing a division in the opinions of one part of the wholesalers is the modification of the working hours. An important group of them consider that if there are no daytime opening hours, as occurs in Mercabarna, the market will end up without any generational changeover. In the meantime, things are continuing with no change.

The figures in fruit and vegetables

The sector that interests us, fruit and vegetables, experienced a 3% drop in 2021, with a figure of 2,159,539 tonnes, which is a direct result of the instability in the consumption patterns unleashed by the pandemic itself.

With the first glimpses of normality, consumption outside the home took back its leading role, along with fresh-cut and ready-cooked products, prepared and frozen, as well as the potato variety Agria, which has increased its sales by 21%, linked to its largest client, the catering and hotel trade.

Spanish cherries were the fruit that experienced the greatest growth, 60% more than in the previous year, along with some tropical fruit such as mangos, avocados, papayas and guavas.

77% of the products marketed in the food unit are Spanish-grown. Castilla y León supplies 43% of the potatoes marketed, followed by La Rioja, the Basque Country and Andalusia.

Moreover, 31% of the vegetables that reach this wholesale market are from Andalusia, followed by Murcia (15%), Castilla La Mancha (13%), Castilla y León (9%) and the Valencian Community (5%).

In fruit, Andalusia and the Valencian Community jointly supply 30% of the fruit, followed by the Canary Islands, Murcia and Catalonia.

A local market

The companies, both large and small, and family-run cooperatives as a whole supplied Mercamadrid with 143, 2 million kilos of local food, marketed in 2021.

Amongst the local towns that supply the market are Fuenlabrada, at a distance of 23 kilometres, to Cebreros, at 90 km, passing through Chinchón, which is 44 kilometres away. The production from these places carries the badge “Here. Local products.”

  • Last news

    The most read

    Newsletter Fruittoday

    Every Wednesday in your email Inbox, get the highlights of the horticultural week