The industry of Ciego de Ávila, unable to assimilate the extraordinary pineapple harvest

The industry of Ciego de Ávila, unable to assimilate the extraordinary pineapple harvest

Charging in freely convertible currency (MLC), one of the main incentives of the famous 63 measures to boost agricultural production, no longer even works as a claim. The delays to pay in this way amount to approximately six months and the producers prefer to take the pesos, constant and sound, on the spot rather than trust that half a year later they can receive something better.

This is revealed by María Teresa de la Torre Ordaz, head of the production group at the Canned Fruit and Vegetable Base Business Unit (UEB) of Ciego de Ávila, in a report on the saturation of pineapple (of the red Spanish variety) that was has produced this May. “Producers do not want freely convertible currency as payment, because it takes up to six months to receive it. They want money in hand, fast and timely,” reveals the official, who pays 700,000 pesos per quintal of fruit if the farmer transports it.

The amount is much higher than that offered by the Victoria de Girón Agroindustrial Company, in the Matanzas municipality of Jagüey Grande de Matanzas, which has caused the tons of pineapple to reach a level that the ancient industry is not capable of managing. A success story that has suddenly become a nightmare, to the point that the directors of the Majagua canning factory do not know how to ask the producers to stop carrying the fruit. According to bill the provincial newspaper Invasive This Tuesday, some 800 tons are accumulated in this factory, many of them from Matanzas.

The delay in milling is currently two days, since, according to Dainier Ortiz Duquesne, yard manager, on May 27 there were 215 crates collected, with 112 tons of fruit out in the open. Well above what can be processed, which is about 70 tons on the best days and 100 on those that excel in yield. In addition, there were six trucks waiting to be emptied and another three were outside.

In addition to the amount of pineapple received, the factory has limited performance due to breakages and breakdowns that afflict Cuban industries.

In addition to the amount of pineapple received, as usual, the factory’s performance is limited due to breakages and all kinds of breakdowns that constantly afflict Cuban industries. Like the snake that bites its own tail, the avalanche of fruit, in turn, is forcing the machines more than –already barely– they can bear and increasing failures in the conveyor belts, the angles, the weight, the washing basin, the mat, the mill, the sieve and the old concentrator.

Added to all this is the shortage of energy. Before, the workers affirm, the industry was protected so that it would not stop working with the limitations, but the shortage is so great that the directors were unable to obtain a commitment from the provincial energy company to avoid blackouts.

The officials, who give all kinds of details about the arrival of the fruit, the capacity of the machinery and the human resources, overwhelmed, ask that the transfer be contained so that the fruit does not rot, but to date they have not been successful. , sometimes because, even, the producer does not approach the place and only the driver does. In the report they even say to wait to cut the pineapple from the bush, arguing that it is a fruit that lasts a long time without spoiling. “Why does he cut and hit, cut and hit?” he says, demanding patience.

The producers, for their part, claim that it is not their fault that the factory is unable to assimilate the fruit that arrives. “We understand that the industry is old and has received a large volume of fruit, blackouts, breakages, but I can’t let it rot in the field,” says one of those interviewed for the article.

“The price they pay in Jagüey Grande is not even enough to pay the workers in the furrow, just over 400.00 pesos per quintal,” he adds, which leads many producers like him to travel to Ciego de Ávila, where conditions are more advantageous, something they would not do, they insist, if the Matanzas industry were more convenient for them.

“The producers call because they want to come,” insist the officials, who did not expect that the success of the harvest would end up being an inconvenience.

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