Strawberry growers in Spain are coming under increasing pressure from other countries, it has been claimed.
Tom Semark, regional manager for AFI Direct Sales, told the recent soft fruit conference in Kent that growers in the Huelva region of Spain, the largest production area in Europe, face competition from Turkey, Morocco and Egypt and, as a result, are switching to other profitable crops such as raspberries and blueberries.
Semark said strawberry production in the region had fallen from a peak of 8,750 hectares two years ago to 7,500 hectares last year, and volumes were likely to remain static at 281,000 tonnes.
The UK imports about 12,500 tonnes a year.