Not even 'liquid gold', the jewel in the crown of our agri-food exports (60,118 million euros in 2021, 11% more) and of which Spain is the first producer, concentrating 40% of production, is spared unemployment. carriers. In line with what was stated a few days ago by the Spanish Association of Exporters and Industrialists of Table Olives (Asemesa), the Spanish oil industry has launched its particular cry for help, which in the long run may mean
a serious threat to Spanish leadership in this area. The National Association of Edible Oil Manufacturers, Bottlers and Refiners (Anierac) and the Spanish Association of Olive Oil and Pomace Oil Industry and Export Trade (Asoliva) have agreed on their fear of foreign trade.
"Export contracts are being cancelled, because they are not being able to be fulfilled", pointed out the general director of Asoliva Rafael Pico.
From these employers have indicated that the activity is practically paralyzed and that foreign importers are finding alternatives in countries such as Portugal, Italy and Tunisia. “All this is causing damage to the image of Spain“, confirmed Pico who describes a panorama of goods that do not arrive at ports, in the absence of trucks, and warehouses full of packaged oil ready for consumption. »A lot of time has been lost, the problem is getting worse and, to all this, our happy competitors«, he lamented.
Pico has demanded responsibility from the Government and warns that "even in supermarkets food products are beginning to be lacking" and urges them "to make a decision." All this, coming from a "difficult" campaign with an average production of 1.5 million tons of olive oil per year and high prices at origin. In addition to an increase in production costs. The European Commission estimates that extra virgin olive oil prices grew by 33% during 2021 compared to 19% in Greece and a 7% drop in Italy. "It has become an expensive product," said the head of Asoliva, who considers markets such as the Russian, Ukrainian and Belarusian lost due to the conflict.
According to the Ministry of Agriculture, the 2020/2021 campaign ended with 1.6 million tons of production and very close to the record levels reached in 2013/2014. However, this year the estimates of Agrifood Cooperatives estimate a production of around 1.3 million tons.
Unemployment is expensive for the agri-food sector
From the Spanish Federation of Food and Drink Industries (FIAB) they have estimated that unemployment is causing them to lose at a rate of 100 million euros per day and that some 100,000 jobs are "in question". The damage in food distribution reaches 130 million, organizations such as Aecoc, Asedas and Hospitality of Spain have pointed out.