ASSITOL fears the perfect storm, caused by energy price increases and drought, and asks the institutions for urgent interventions to lighten their bills and safeguard the shopping cart.
For extra virgin olive oil, a hot autumn is expected: energy price increases and drought seriously jeopardize the activities of companies and the profitability of the entire olive-oil supply chain. But it is precisely in a logic of saving and prevention that ASSITOL, the Italian Association of the Oil Industry, invites consumers to do not give up the main food of the Mediterranean Diet, essential for the health and diet of Italians.
“The moment is very delicate – he explains Anna Cane, president of the Association’s olive oil group – the consequences of expensive energy and climate change are severely damaging the sector ”. The oil campaign, now imminent, will be of discharge, therefore with a lower production, and will have to discount months of extreme weather: first the desert heat starting from May, then a series of storms in August. However, the harvest is still more than a month away and much will depend on the weather conditions in September which, if favorable, could partially offset the harmful effects of the high temperatures and, at the time of pressing, on the actual yields.
According to initial estimates, production in Italy is expected to be around 250 thousand tons of olive oil, down by almost 20% compared to the previous campaign. Far from the needs of the sector which, between the national market and export, amounts to about 1 million tons. To the discharge campaign and the unpredictable climate, it must be added the surge in energy costs, now unstoppable, and the increase in paper and glass, essential for packaging.
“There is a lot of talk about sustainabilitywhich however is not only environmental, but is also social and economic.– underlines the president of the entrepreneurs – Even the oil industry has to bear heavy bills. Energy has become an unsustainable cost not only for businesses, but for the entire supply chain“. In fact, olive growers and oil millers are forced to face the increase in electricity, the costs of which have increased fivefold.CopyAMP code.
In short, the prerequisites for a difficult oil campaign are all there. “Our sector, which has always had a low margin, has been involved for months in containing operating expenses – says Anna Cane – now, however, companies can no longer stop the continuous wave of increases. It is almost impossible to prevent the price increases on energy and raw materials from reflecting on the final price, even if to a small extent ”. It would be appropriate, today more than ever “the repositioning of the prices of extra virgin and olive oil, redesigned thanks to a close collaboration with the large-scale retail trade“.
For all these reasons, ASSITOL calls for urgent intervention to the institutions. “We ask the Government to support our industry through the Dl aid bislightening the energy bills of companies, how EU countries like France and Spain are already doing, our competitors. In this way, the shopping cart of Italians is also protected, in its healthiest and most traditional component. Risking that the consumer penalizes further the purchase of olive oil means not protecting the Mediterranean Diet “.