Oil producers in Majorca have been devastated by the paralysis in the Tourism and Hospitality Sectors caused by the State of Emergency.
Last month winemakers in Majorca warned that they would be left with a surplus wine due to the closure of hotels and restaurants and now oil producers say they’re in the same boat.
"We have a surplus of 50% which amounts to about 200 tons of oil," said Miquel Gual, President of the Cooperative of Sant Bartomeu in Soller.
He says the absence of tourists has seriously affected sales.
"Tourists know our product because it has the quality seal of the Designation of Origin and they buy it for their family and friends at home," he says.
“Sales of D.O. products in small establishments have plummeted, but exports remain stable,” according the President of the D.O. Oli de Mallorca, Joan Mayol.
Producers who sell mainly to restaurants and hotels have been very badly affected.
”Sales to the Hospitality Industry account for 30% of production,” says Gual.
The measures set by the Central Government for the ‘new normal’ will also affect some of these producers because now they will have to sell oil in single doses to bars and restaurants.
"That will lead to higher production costs and, in some cases, may be unfeasible," says Joan Mayol.
But despite the adversities, he says Oli de Mallorca has created a niche market thanks to the Denomination of Origin seal of quality, "despite competing with oils that sell below the price of the cost of production”.
Mayol and Gual are adamant that mechanisms are needed to promote local agricultural and livestock products with the seal of quality.
"The question we have to ask ourselves is whether we want an agri-food industry or not and if we do, the Administration must provide resources to promote it,” says Gual.
Last year a total of 464,000 litres of oil were made with the DO Oli de Mallorca.