FARMERS who have not collected their almonds during the past harvest will lose grants from the European Union, as this is one of the indirect requirements to receive this benefit.
This is due to the fact that the farmers are obliged to join an organisation of producers in order to receive the grants and the organisation demands that they harvest their crop every year.
Nevertheless, the farmers who can justify not having harvested their crop because of bad weather or because there were none to harvest, subject to certification by Balearic Ministry for Agriculture officials, will not lose their grant.
The department directed by Merce Amer has asked the organisation of producers to supply a list of names of farmers who have not harvested their almonds. This is a routine practice which is done every year. One of the reasons why some almonds stayed unharvested last year was the low prices on offer.
In fact, the prices had fallen by 40 percent due to imported almonds from the United State which were cheaper because the dollar was weak against the euro. To this fall in the price of almonds must be added the decrease in production, which was more than 20 percent.
Meanwhile, Lorenzo Rosello, director of the Almond Producers Group, complained that the EU grants were not enough to maintain almond growing.