AILIMPO aligns to demand price increases from retailers as the only way to support cost increases

The unanimous message from the Spanish Lemon sector is clear: Environmental and social sustainability must be paid for.

Murcia, 2 March 2022

These are difficult times for the fruit and vegetable sector in general and the citrus sector in particular. In addition to the growth in European imports of citrus from outside the EU, especially Turkish lemons, there is now an increase in costs along the supply chain – from the tree to the delivery of the packed lemon to the supermarkets – due to various external events.

Faced with this scenario, the Spanish lemon sector, represented by AILIMPO, has lined up to demand a price increase from the European distribution chains as the only way to support the rise in production and transport costs. “Otherwise, the consequence will be the loss of the economic sustainability of our activity”, underlines the interprofessional.

Therefore, the unanimous message from growers, cooperatives and exporters of Spanish lemons that the cost overruns should be passed on to the final price is very clear. “As has already happened in other food sectors and with other products, the Spanish lemon sector is clearly demanding retaliers for an increase in prices as the only possible formula to support the rise in costs that affect both production in the orchards and the harvesting and packing of fruit in the warehouses: labor, electricity, water, inputs, fuel, etc.”, AILIMPO points out.

Commitment to sustainability

In fact, the Interprofessional Association of Lemon and Grapefruit recalls that over the last few years the sector has invested “numerous resources” to significantly reduce its water footprint, achieving the lowest among the fruits produced in Spain; to have much more sustainable crops or to maintain a forest of lemon trees, which absorbs 360,550 tonnes of CO2 every year.

In short, AILIMPO insists on the need to make consumers aware of the benefits that Spanish lemons bring in terms of environmental and social sustainability, “by becoming a sector that is very aware of and committed to the environment so that now, on the part of European distribution, the great effort made throughout this time is not sufficiently valued”.

AILIMPO is a Spanish interprofessional organisation, based in Murcia, officially recognised by the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (MAPA) and the European Commission, which represents the economic interests of lemon and grapefruit growers, cooperatives, exporters and industrialists. A sector in which Spain is the world leader in fresh exports and is in second place as a processing country, with an annual turnover of more than 700 million euros, generating 20,000 direct jobs and transferring more than 250 million euros to auxiliary industries.