Lemon growers in the Vega Baja are having a hard time of it. They are having to compete with crops from Morocco and Algeria where labour is much cheaper and from Turkey where the growers receive financial support which allows them to sell their crops at below the cost of production.
At six cents per kilo, the current market price, farmers in Alicante province are loosing money. Their only hope is that there is a frost in those other countries because that always pushes prices up or that there is a frost here in Alicante because then the local growers can claim on their insurance. In the meantime some farmers are allowing people to pick the crop for nothing as long as they leave the trees clean – at least then they don’t have to pay pickers to collect the fruit.