If you went shopping recently in Israel and looked for red peppers (gamba), you probably did not find them, and if you were lucky you found the green ones only.
According to farmers, the reason for this it turns out is that from an agricultural point of view we are now on the seam line between the seasons. As far as the farmers are concerned, the winter is over and it is already possible to begin picking the crop, but this seamline usually has no shortage and when this is a shortage, is usually does not exceed a week but this time, it is a bit longer.
The reason for this is that if in the past there were more farmers who grew peppers, but today, they are the minority. “Today there are five farmers in the Negev who start picking goods, and this is a fundamental difference to what we used to be 20 farmers who grow peppers,” says one of the farmers quoted by Ladaat News, adding, “We started picking in the Negev region, and even this week we started transferring the goods to the marketers, beautiful merchandise.”
Despite this, with regard to the price, the farmer does not have good news. “We get between six and seven shekels a kilo, but our merchandise comes to the market at a price of NIS 20 per kilo.”
It turns out that this reason as well as other reasons lead farmers to leave the industry, including farmers who have grown peppers in recent years. “We have lost a lot of money in recent years. There are only a few brave farmers who believe in their skills or are anchored in good economic contracts, and have no reason to abandon the profession,” says another farmer, who added, “I hope that the cycle will be for a long time and there will be a shortage of additional vegetables too, and then, perhaps someone will hear our cry.”
(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)