Spanish grain sector raises alarm: importing grain from Ukraine without tariffs is sinking prices

Alarm bells have gone off in the Spain cereal sector due to the permissiveness of Brussels to the entry of grain from Ukraine, without the limits and mandatory tariffs for imports coming into the European Union from third-party countries, warns the Association of Young Farmers (ASAJA).

This irregular situation is putting pressure on the markets and today wheat is already trading at values 30 percent below those of April 2022. These prices are below the costs borne by cereal growers in our country and do not obey any market logic in a country like Spain, which imports significant amounts of cereal and oilseeds, and also faces with total uncertainty pertaining to the next harvest.

The whole of Spain is currently immersed in a very serious drought situation, which is also affecting Castilla y León region. Harvest expectations are decreasing week by week and are already disastrous in large areas. The very low expected yields, together with the exorbitant production costs involved in sowing, will mean very large losses for farms. If the low prices are maintained, in a market “doped” by the flood of grain from Ukraine at lower prices, ruin would be more than certain for thousands of farms in our country.

It should be borne in mind that Spain is the first recipient of cereals (wheat, barley and corn) from Ukraine, since our country has a deficit in these productions. “Of course we will continue importing grain from Ukraine, and also preferentially over other third-party countries, to support its economy. But it has to be under the conditions established in the EU, with the corresponding limits and tariffs.”

From ASAJA: “we have shared and supported all the measures taken by Europe and the rest of the world to help the Ukrainian people and also their farmers to provide an outlet for their cereals and oilseeds, but we can not agree to flood our markets without limitations or tariffs being a third country”.

Therefore, ASAJA asks the Government of Spain, with Pedro Sanchez at the head, which, in line with other European countries, to mark a clear position in defense of the interests of the Spanish cereal sector. “Farmers can not assume alone a sacrifice that involves the ruin of their farms. Of course we want to be in solidarity with the Ukrainian people, but that support has to be done with the money, work and the effort of all, not only with the farmers,” concludes ASAJA.