Heavy November rains along Valencia’s coastal regions caused more than €62 million in losses, including crop damage, the extra treatments to save trees and repairs to damaged infrastructure, according to a preliminary assessment by the Valencian Association of Agricultural Producers (AVA-ASAJA).
In La Ribera, losses amount to €42 million. Citrus is the most affected crop, with some 15,000 hectares affected and 20 million fruits that will not reach the markets. As for kakis, whose harvesting season is underway, there are 4,000 hectares seriously damaged and losses amount to around €12 million. Moreover, 1,000 hectares devoted to seasonal vegetables, both in the open ground and in greenhouses, have been destroyed with an economic impact of €6 million. Lastly, the nurseries of ornamental plants and flowers, which have had 100 hectares hit by the storm, estimate their losses at €4 million, and this follows the impact of COVID-19 on the market.
AVA-ASAJA also estimates that €5 million will have to be spent by producers on fungicide and revitalising treatments in order to salvage the next season and even the life of the trees. The agrarian organization warns that if citrus and kaki fields remain flooded for several days, there may be irreversible damage caused by root asphyxia.
As far as agricultural infrastructures are concerned, AVA-ASAJA estimates the extra costs needed to repair roads, pipelines, greenhouses, warehouses or irrigation facilities at €15 million. In total, AVA-ASAJA believes that €62 million will be needed.