Castilla y León is the community with the largest area dedicated to this crop, more than 19,000 hectares, and with the highest production, 930,000 tons in the last campaign
The Director of Agriculture, Livestock and Rural Development, Jesús Julio Carnero, has signed the Order recognizing as an interprofessional organization the association ‘Interprofessional Potato Organization of Castilla y León’ which, integrating the most representative associations of the producer, transformative and marketing sector, aims to be an instrument of ordination and vertebration.
It has been a long work, started years ago, where both Interprofessional itself and the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Rural Development have carried out various activities aimed at publicize the advantages of constituting this body, managing, for the moment, to gather the support of more than 51% of the area and volume of potato grown and produced in Castile and León.
The recognition process took its first step on April 29, 2016 with the establishment of the Interprofessional Association of the Potato of Castile and León. The associations integrated by the industry are: Asaja, the Alliance for the Unit of the UPA-COAG Field, the Union of Peasants of Castile and León (UCCL), the Regional Union of Cooperatives of Castilla y León (Urcacyl) and the Association of Potato Producers of Castilla y León (Apacyl); and by the marketing branch: Urcacyl and the Association of Potato Operators in The Origin of Castile and León (Asopocyl).
The initial target was to obtain the necessary support from producers and marketers to achieve 51% of the productions concerned in the production sector and in the field of processing and/or marketing. Representativeness in the processing sector was achieved in a short space of time, however, the path to achieving this percentage in the producing sector has been a long way off.
After numerous communication and dissemination activities through newsletters, circulars and briefings, the objective of representativeness established by the legislation was achieved following the momentum given at the last Regional Potato Bureau held in Carpio, Valladolid, on 17 January.
Objectives to consider
The interprofessional, as stated in its application for recognition lodged on 20 July, sets out as the first objectives of work the following:
- To provide digital information with up-to-date content on the potato sector, with importance to the operators of Castilla y León, while maintaining a network of operators collaborating with information on potato cultivation and trade in the Community.
- Analyze the different potato varieties used in Castilla y León, with special detail of the cultivated areas of each of them and their peculiarities of cultivation.
- Develop and update the approved potato contract for both industry and fresh use.
- Design a training campaign aimed at both producers and consumers.
- Start a long-term relationship with distribution agents, to know what activities they propose to increase potato consumption.
The Reconnaissance Order is the last administrative step for its implementation. It is now up to Interprofessional itself to address the challenges that arise in the sector, with the support of the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Rural Development itself.
It should be remembered that Castilla y León is the autonomous community with the largest area dedicated to this crop, more than 19,000 hectares, and the one that has the highest production in spain as a whole, 930,000 tons in the last campaign.