Our drive up from the south coast of Spain was a bit of an eye opener. The views have stuck with me for all the wrong reasons.
The Costa Almeria is a prime fruit growing area and you’d imagine farms, orange groves, greenery, tomatoes? Not one little bit. What you do see is MORE THAN A LITTLE FRIGHTENING.
Of the fruit and veg we buy in out supermarkets, tonnes and tonnes of it comes from the Costa Almeria, especially tomatoes and peppers. It’s BIG business.
The route is lined with lots of farms growing tomatoes etc. But it looks like this…
Mile after mile after mile after mile. 435 square miles. The biggest greenhouse on the planet. Staffed mainly by struggling immigrant workers – there’s a link to a NEPIM report below (Network for the Promotion of Sustainable Consumption in Europe).
This is the E15 which follows the coast from Motril to Almeria, Nijar and beyond. It was a disturbing drive. A whole new, scary farming world of plastic greenhouses. High fences and locked metal gates. 100km long. Both sides of the road. Even on the beach.
What do tomatoes growing on the beach eat in order to grow?
Hydroponic farming is when plants don’t even come into contact with the soil. They float in a watery solution. You can’t see inside the greenhouses exactly what’s happening so we don’t know.
The fruit and vegetables neighbour industrial zones, car garages and plastic producers. Are farms not supposed to be in the countryside?
The first website below has some far better aerial pictures of the greenhouses showing just how big these greenhouses are – the first picture is SCARY.
This is another link – which reports on who is employed in these greenhouses and under what conditions –
A food production video worth watching –
Out of sight, out of mind…..
Is fruit and veg good for us these days? Will an apple a day keep the doctor away? Why do we allow the food we buy and eat to be produced like this? Have we maybe gone a little bit mad?
Or maybe we just don’t really know how our food is produced. A slick and clever machine is the food industry.