In its better years, the Paimpol coconut production could reach up to 10,000 tons, but the year 2020 marked “the smallest harvest in 10 years” with only 4,300 tons. According to Hubert Jacob, producer and president of the union in the defense of the Paimpol coconut PDO, “we have been facing a regular decrease over the past 3 years.”
Faced with the consequences of the frost episode that severely affected French farms last April, producers are organizing themselves to cope. According to the PDO Peaches and Apricots of France, the apricot orchards were the most affected by the frost. Some producers in the Rhône-Alpes region have reported losses of 80%.
The cherry harvest in the Gard department should have been starting in the coming days, but the recent frost has destroyed nearly 80% of the harvest. Guillaume Galoppini, producer in Bellegarde, does not know yet if he qualifies for the aid announced last Saturday. “It makes me want to quit completely.”
In Corsica, the kiwi crops have not been spared by the cold. For Pascal Fazi, who has been growing nearly 5 hectares of kiwis since 2015, the frost has caused significant damage. Kiwis normally like the cold, but the young shoots are literally burned. “The more rustic kiwi fruit can withstand very cold, even negative temperatures when it is winter.
One of France's biggest export industries is facing a devastating blow after an unusually severe frost earlier this month damaged vineyards across the country. The frost has affected 80% of vineyards in France's primary wine growing areas, according to the European Committee of Wine Companies. Winemakers tried to keep air temperatures up by lighting candles and braziers in their vineyards, but in many cases it was not enough to protect their budding vines.
On Saturday, April 17th, the French prime minister announced the creation of an “exceptional solidarity fund” of 1 billion euros [1.20 billion USD] for the farmers affected by the frost. “The government must provide assistance in face of this disaster. The exceptional situation calls for exceptional measures.
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