This week’s weather around the Mediterranean caused a lot of damage in the south of France; the French government has declared a state of natural disaster. In Béziers, 6 gallons per square feet fell in 24h. Other municipalities in France and in Spain were also severely affected. The episode inevitably has consequences for the fruit and vegetable sector.
Among the businesses to have suffered most economic harm during the destructive “gota fría” storm of 12 to 14th September are many crop farmers whose land disappeared under floodwater, but arguably even more severe damage was done to the tuna fish farm belonging to Grupo Ricardo Fuentes 4.5 kilometres off the coast of San Pedro del Pinatar and Pilar de la Horadada.
Hail storm activity in Saskatchewan for the first half of September is described as moderate with minor to heavy crop damage. The president of the Canadian Crop Hail Association, Rick Omelchenko, says there were over 530 prairie hail claims in the first two weeks of this month, with about two-thirds from Saskatchewan.
Farmers are counting the costs of crop damage after isolated but severe frosts dealt a cruel blow on WA’s south coast. Temperatures dropped to below freezing at Esperance and surrounding areas last week, damaging the region’s crops, with reports emerging entire farms’ crops could be lost following the substantial stem frost.
The strong frosts in the Caderechas Valley in April and May, when temperatures fell to -2 and -5º C, affected the flowering stage of the Reineta apples. 50% of the production was lost due to this weather event. Thus, producers will only collect approximately 100,000 kilos, when they normally harvest 200,000 kilos.
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