Mercadona plans to buy 220,000 tonnes of citrus fruit grown in Spain for the 2023/24 season, reflecting an increase of 10% compared to the previous season.
The mandarin season starts in October and ends in May; the lemon season also starts in October and lasts till June; while the orange season starts in November and continues up to August, the retailer noted.
The Spanish retailer has pledged to source local fruit and vegetables and will procure citrus fruit from suppliers in the Valencia Region, Andalusia, Murcia, Catalonia and the Canary Islands.
The retailer offers freshly squeezed orange juice in its fruit and vegetable section in three packaging formats - 250 millilitres, 500 millilitres and 1 litre - as it seeks to promote the consumption of citrus fruit.
Oranges, mandarins and lemons are a source of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants and help maintain a balanced diet, the company noted.
For the year 2021/22, the retailer ended its orange and mandarin campaign in the country with 192,000 tonnes of oranges and mandarins from Spain.
During the purchasing campaign of oranges and mandarins originating in Spain, which lasted approximately from October 2021 until the beginning of September 2022, Mercadona purchased more than 140,000 tonnes of oranges and 52,000 tonnes of mandarins from specialist national suppliers, chosen from over 2,500 growers throughout Spain.
Elsewhere, a second consecutive year of drought in southern Spain will keep the country's olive oil production below average in 2023/24, meaning the European Union faces another year of high prices, official data showed.