Banana processing centre opens
The news that the tender for the first phase of work on the new technology centre in Madeira is now underway makes headlines in JM this morning The project includes the remodelling of all EEM (Empresa de Electricidade da Madeira) structures in Virtudes and the connection to the future CAM Ring submarine cable systems that will reach the entire national territory. The investment of more than 15 million euros is financed by the PRR (more EU money) and promises new technological solutions and greater security.
Banana processing centre opens
Still on the subject of technology, the new Banana Processing Centre opened yesterday in São Martinho. This cost €14.2 million and has the capacity to process 100 tons of bananas per day.
The new centre is located in an area of 6,000 square metres and has six processing lines, five conventional and one biological.
The combination of this centre with the Madeira Banana Center, in Ponta do Sol, which opened in 2022, increases the daily processing capacity to 150 tons in the Region.
Yesterday afternoon, at the inauguration of thenew plant, the president of the Regional Government defended the regulation of the banana market.
“I never allowed the deregulation of the market, for the simple reason that what happened in the past cannot happen again in Madeira”, he argued, claiming that today “the demands of the export market are such that we need to have a processed, certified banana and, above all, packaged with all the conditions required by consumption and distribution standards”.
Therefore, “I will not allow people to enter into speculative adventures that would only harm producers, in the medium and long term, and make money for half a dozen.” “It didn’t happen and it won’t happen,” he warned.
During this inauguration, which began with a visit to the new facilities, Miguel Albuquerque also said that bananas are the best-selling fruit in the world. Europe alone consumes seven million tons of bananas per year.
With Madeira capable of producing 24 thousand tons in 2023, Miguel Albuquerque said that to safeguard regional interests in the national and European market, the Regional Government has done work “not visible in the day-to-day consultation with Spain and France”, in order to protect the interests of regional production.
“This work has been developed over the years, because France has two European banana-producing regions, which are Guadeloupe and Martinique, and Spain has the Canaries”. But, overall, Europe produces only 600,000 tons. Therefore, “in a universe of seven million tons, we are competing in a minority with powers from South America, whose production costs for the so-called dollar banana are much lower than ours”.
“It is essential”, therefore, to continue this “concertation work, within the framework of the European Union, in order to maintain our market shares and defend our bananas, within the meaning of European bananas”, he added.
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