translated from Spanish: Hailstones hit the agricultural sector: Fedefruta calculates millionaires damage and loss of up to 50 thousand jobs

Agricultural Minister Antonio Walker confirmed it and the President of the SNA Ricardo Ariztia then ratified it. Surprising and intense rain and hailstones fallen Monday strongly affected the agricultural sector in at least three regions of the country (O’Higgins, Maule and Ñuble), and it will also have serious consequences on the use of the area.
The climate phenomenon hit with everything just in time when the labor market is under pressure and although the latest report of the INE placed under expected unemployment, providing little relief to the Government, is not others mention the warning of the CPC on reform pension and the redundancies announced yesterday by Farmacias Ahumada. 
Now the agricultural sector also took their accounts after the black clouds that fell on crops. The Federation of fruit producers (Fedefruta) handed over its land, and said that economically, the losses will exceed the US $200 million.
And as a side effect to provide a significant loss of jobs since the fruit which was damaged crops may not work.  «Only in the case of cherry, nearly 10 thousand jobs will be lost. At a general level, one could speak of 40 to 50 thousand people who will be out of work», said the President of the Organization, Jorge Valenzuela, in an interview with Digital Radio.
It is worth mentioning that, according to the land registry, the National fruit expansion amounts to 321 thousand hectares, of which 85 thousand of these are concentrated in the region of O’Higgins, which corresponds to 26.5% of production in the country.
«That percentage of the region, detected an area severely damaged by the hail, in the province of Cachapoal, one of hearts fruit in our country where are planted almost all species that occur in Chile: cherry, table grape and» «grapes, kiwi, peach, Nectarine, almonds and walnuts, among several others».
Despite the black picture, the President of Fedefruta tried to calm the waters in a statement and said that «in this complicated time for fruit producers affected by the severe HailStorm, we want to assure you that we are working for» out of this difficult situation».
Valenzuela said the situation is «extremely sensitive» and recalled that since 2003, were not phenomena «of these dimensions that will impact our fruit-growing, days after splitting with crops. Without a doubt, this HailStorm committed the fruit season we were soon to begin».
In the midst of this panorama, authorities of the O’Higgins Region – the most affected by the climatic phenomenon – called on the Government to declare agricultural emergency area to the affected areas, in order to have extraordinary resources to go to the aid of the affected people.
But the Executive has no concrete measures. Agricultural Minister Antonio Walker, but noted that «we are talking about significant harm, there are producers and farmers who have lost everything,» was emphatic in that this does not alter the projections of the sector.
«We are not going to let just anyone, there are people who lose employment, we are seeing as a relocation to other sectors, we need to support farmers who must reach the next harvest of 2019, we’re seeing with the BancoEstado as to support them and INDAP as to help young farmers (…) between now and Friday will have an accurate diagnosis with accurate measurements to support those affected,»he said.
Felipe Larraín recognized «major damage», who also referred to the consequences of the phenomenon was the Minister of Hacienda Felipe Larraín. «Empathetic with the agricultural world of areas close to Rancagua who lived a situation of hail just when already the fruits are maturing, to point of being harvested, causing damage that we consider important,» said.
Larrain said that of course he regretted the situation and said that «it is difficult to measure what will be the impact, no doubt that you can have an impact on the regional economy, and we hope that it is as little as possible», said the Secretary of State in Valparaiso, after participate in the adoption of the idea of legislating the 2019 budget in the Chamber.

Original source in Spanish

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