Local fruit and berries will be scarce this summer

Take note – story published 1 year ago

Fruit orchards and gardens in all regions of Latvia have been damaged with the unusual frost last week. The damage will cost millions, estimated the Latvian Association of Fruit Growers, which will turn to the Ministry of Agriculture (ZM) for support to the sector, Latvian Radio reported on May 12. 

Māra Rudzāte, chair of the Board of the Latvian Association of Fruit Growers, said that, for example, 80% to 100% sweet cherry trees have suffered, while around 70% of apple and pear trees have been damaged. It means that local fruits will be few and far between on the market.

In view of the fact that fruit trees cannot be insured against the frost at present and that such a devastating and lasting frost is rare, this time the industry will turn to the ZM for aid.

“This was the case that we had people working [against frost] but when it comes to - 7 degrees, it doesn't work. Even currants and blackcurrants, already in full bloom in Kurzeme, have suffered at 70%. We would, of course, very much like us to have some kind of support, because there has been no such frost for 20 years. We expect aid in the form of compensation or increased payments, or in any other way, because it is a crisis. I'll meet the ministry in the next week or the week after,” Rudzāte said.

In Latvia, orchards cover around 10 thousand hectares in total, with around 300 owners in the association.

In the coming weeks, the association is calculating and billing the exact amount of losses to be submitted to the ministry.


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