Ontario Agriculture

The network for agriculture in Ontario, Canada

Day 7 of AALP Class 17 IST contintued with one of the highlights so far on the trip, a fruit cooperative named Cuna De Platero. We were lucky enough to be taken on a tour of their greenhouses where they allowed to try some of the different varieties of strawberries that they grow.  The greenhouses are once again made with plastic and are of similar style to our previous visits this trip. They have a cooperative structure, which is something we have come to find is very common here in Spain. In this case they have approximately 80 growers that contribute towards the production of strawberries, raspberries, blueberries and black berries, which strawberries being their biggest crop.

There are many different microclimates in Spain which allows different areas to produce different products, even when they are in relatively close proximity to one another.  This cooperative grows both hydroponic and field strawberries. In the hydroponic system they are very accurately able to control and monitor the water and nutrients that the crops require. This system allows them to grow twice as much fruit as they can in a field system. They have external inspections completed by the supermarket chains that buy their product and must keep strict records for traceability purposes. 85% of their product is exported to Europe including Germany, France, Italy, Austria and the Netherlands.

 Quick facts about strawberry growing in Spain:
- 6,800 Ha grown
- 342,000 tonnes of berries produced
- 70% of total production exported (mostly within Europe)
- Total value of exports is approx. $471.5 million

Day number 8 started out with a trip to the Sierra Mountains on our way to the Eiriz Iberian ham farm. This stop provided a contrast to some of the pork production that we have in Ontario. The model they use is limited by the space they have to process the pigs and are maxed out at 2,000 pigs per year through their current facilities. The tour started with a visit to the fields where the Iberico pigs are pastured. Each animal requires between 1-2 ha of land and this is a requirement by law in order to get the Iberico certification. Prior to harvest the pigs need to consume between 10-13kgs of acorns from oak and cork trees for 60 days during acorn season. This is monitored with blood tests by the government to ensure the high quality of the product. Our tour guide Manuel was very knowledgeable on the production system since it is a family-owned business, that was founded in 1840, with a small workforce that all assist in looking after each aspect of the operation. The trip was rounded out with an incredible tasting of the different pork products they produce, and some local wine and sherry.

Next up was travelled to Jerez de la Frontera, which is a town that is known for it’s wine and sherry production. We toured Jose Estevez S.A. who produce sherry, brandy and vinaigrettes. The company was founded in 1974 and is now run by Jose Estevez’s three sons. The expanse of the compound was incredible, with 52,000 casks of product being produced on site, magnificent art work throughout all of the buildings including a Picasso exhibit and a stable of horses that has turned from a hobby into another line of business for the company.

Rounding out day 8 we attended an evening Flamenco & dinner show at The Restaurante El Palacio Andalusia Cartuja back in the city of Seville. Flamenco is a staple of Spanish culture that we have seen throughout our travels through the country and while not all of us understood the language we certainly felt the passion for which the performers have for their art.

Views: 624

Comment

You need to be a member of Ontario Agriculture to add comments!

Join Ontario Agriculture

Agriculture Headlines from Farms.com Canada East News - click on title for full story

Pork producers lead freedom to farm defense

The National Pork Producers Council led livestock and farm groups in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit to fight back against activist attacks on pork producers’ fundamental due process rights and the regulatory foundation of modern livestock production. Earlier this year, a large number of national and state activist groups, led by Food & Water Watch (including Iowa Citizens for Community Improvement and the North Carolina Environmental Justice Network) filed a lawsuit before the court against the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Biden Administration. These groups seek fundamental changes to EPA’s concentrated animal feeding operation rules, including that the law should presume pig and other livestock farmers are discharging pollutants into Waters of the United States in violation of the Clean Water Act. They have asked the court to remove application of the long established and congressionally developed exemption for agricultural stormwater from animal fee

Updated findings on feeding wheat to swine provides valuable new information

Kansas State University researchers and representatives of Kansas Wheat have published updated findings on the value of feeding wheat to pigs. What they’ve found is good news for swine producers and wheat growers. “Our data collected from 2014 to 2020 suggests that wheat’s mean energy content is 99% and 98% of corn for digestible energy and metabolizable energy, respectively” said Joel DeRouchey, a swine specialist for K-State Research and Extension. Bottom line: Wheat can be used at a similar rate as corn in those areas where wheat is available, without a major decrease in the diet energy density. “The use of wheat co-products for the milling industry is a common practice in feeding livestock,” DeRouchey said. “For wheat, there are many different classifications of co-products, such as wheat middlings, wheat millrun, wheat shorts and wheat red dog.” K-State formed a partnership with Kansas Wheat to update what is known about the nutritional value of wheat and wheat co-products.

KENT Launches NexGen Advanced Swine Products

KENT Nutrition Group says they are taking their decades-long commitment to real-world solutions for swine producers to new levels with the release of Nexgen Advanced swine feeds. According to the company, this rebranded line of swine products includes all stages of animal development and combines more than a decade’s worth of performance enhancements, continuous improvements and recent research. “Our ongoing, intense research showed we could improve upon our already strong formulas,” Jim Smith, senior technical swine nutritionist at KENT Nutrition Group, said in a release. “We saw improvements in average daily gain, cost per gain and net return and we want our hog producer customers to have these advantages.” The rebranded line includes improved formulas for over 50 products using the research conducted by Michael Edmonds, vice president, swine nutrition, KNG, at the KENT Research Farm in Muscatine, Iowa. Examples of the research-based pig starter changes include removing fish mea

Smeby Named Producer Outreach Director for Iowa Pork Producers Association

The Iowa Pork Producers Association (IPPA) is pleased to announce the appointment of Brielle Smeby as its new Producer Outreach Director. Smeby, a 2023 graduate of Iowa State University with a major in Animal Science, brings a wealth of experience and a deep passion for the agriculture industry to her new role. She spent the past year as IPPA’s Program and Events Manager. Having grown up on her parents' nursery-to-finish farm in Klemme, Iowa, Smeby has been actively involved in various aspects of pork production, including working with show pigs, weaner pigs, and conducting vaccinations. Her upbringing instilled in her a strong desire to contribute to the agricultural community. “I want to use this position to bring more producers into the association,” Smeby said. “It would be great to have more producers connect with IPPA and utilize the resources we have. The association is here for any questions they have about their farm or industry issues. Reach out to us. We are here to suppor

Farm and Food Care Saskatchewan Unveils First in Series of Short Video Reels

Farm and Food Care Saskatchewan, through its canadianfoodfocus.org web site, has released the first of a series of videos to help non-farming consumers relate to farmers and life on the farm

© 2024   Created by Darren Marsland.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service