Supermarket SPAR has committed to supporting orange producers on the Spanish island of Gran Canaria to make up a drop in trade from hotels and restaurants during Covid.
SPAR Gran Canaria, a branch in the Canary Islands, has agreed to buy 255,000kg of oranges from seven farmers in the Telde region and sell them in 19 of its local supermarkets until the end of January.
The tourism industry has largely been put on hold by the pandemic. Gran Canaria is the second most popular destination within the Canary Islands, with around 4.3m tourists in 2019, according to Statista.
A SPAR spokesperson told SM: “SPAR Gran Canaria has been playing a huge role for all of the local producers by continuing to take as much as possible of the crops that would usually be split between the retail and hospitality industries.
“This has been achieved either by working oranges into salads and things that they sell, or reducing the amount of produce that they may have imported in the past, as well as extra promotion on the products with a particular emphasis on the importance of buying local, which is not something that they would have focused on heavily before.”
This marks the eighth consecutive year that SPAR Gran Canaria has purchased crops from Telde orange farmers, with the quantity up 5,000kg compared to last year.
The farmers are not selling exclusively to the supermarket but if they produce more than forecasted SPAR Gran Canaria has also promised to buy those oranges and sell them in municipalities outside of Telde. This “guarantees farmers the purchase of all their orange production”, according to SPAR.
The agreement started in November and will last until 31 January 2021, in conjunction with peak crop harvests of oranges.
The mayor of Telde, Héctor Suárez, said that “the situation we are currently experiencing highlights the importance of consuming local products.
“In the citrus field, Telde is at the forefront due to its more than consolidated and proven quality.”