Why do Ukrainian Farmers Refuse to Grow Tomatoes?
In Ukraine, the high cost of tomato production is explained by the rapid spread of the nightshade pest – the South American tomato mining moth Tuta absoluta.
Farmer Sergii Sokolov from the Kamiansko-Dniprovsky district of the Zaporizhzhia region (Ukraine) told AgroTimes about this.
Sergii has 2 hectares of greenhouses, where he grows cucumbers and tomatoes. This area has the largest concentration of plastic greenhouses in Ukraine.
“Last year, I spent 70 thousand hryvnyas on the fight against South American tomato moth in my greenhouses, and this year it is one and a half times more. Therefore, I can only hope that the costs will pay off,” the farmer said.
Sergii Sokolov said that in the current conditions, it is challenging to plan the next season. There is a high probability that more and more farmers will abandon the cultivation of tomatoes, especially the second turn. In addition to pests, imports prevent farmers from working steadily.
“Now, when the price of Ukrainian tomatoes is high, you can earn money. However, as soon as imported products go in large quantities, the price will immediately drop. This is usually observed on the 20th of October. When the price should rise against the background of growing production costs for heating greenhouses, it begins to decline. It is already difficult for farmers because the Russian market has closed, and imports are also pressing. The state does not protect Ukrainian producers, does not restrict imports. Farmers get out of the situation as best they can,” explained Sergii Sokolov.