Fruit growing activity in the Template Valleys of Jujuy, Argentina
characterization of the sector
In Jujuy province, in the extreme north-west area of Argentina, four environmental regions are distinguished: temperate valleys, warm valleys, quebrada and puna. The temperate valley is a humid valley with a temperate climate in winter, with 350 to 550 estimated chill hours. It has 30,000 ha under irrigation. Its main productive activity is tobacco, but horticulture and fruit growing are also carried out there. Fruit production is a viable and economical alternative. Fruit trees, like almond, fig, custard apple and peach, were introduced more than 50 years ago. Peach production is the activity that keeps growing and incorporating technology. The cultivars grown in the area have first and extra-prime characteristics, harvest from September to December. The ecological conditions of the temperate valleys, due to its mild annual weather conditions, are suitable for very early production, like in no other area of the country, with which it obtains great competitive advantages in national markets; annually, 1,300 tons of peaches enter the Central Market of Buenos Aires from Jujuy. The entry of this prime fruit marks the trend of the season and makes it the main prime peach area in Argentina. This commercial opportunity is also seen from the analysis of the seasonality of the market offer of species, such as nectarines, plums, cherries and apricots. The institutions in the area (INTA-FCA-UNJU) work jointly with the fruit sector, and important advances in production technology have been made: planting densities, harvest rates, color chart to determine harvest, market information, market studies and analysis of commercial opportunities, crop management and genetic improvement.
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