José Miguel Manzano is from a family of producers with 16 hectares of ecological pepper, melon and watermelon in Adra, and he states that ‘a time came that we did not see it right to use chemical products, so we changed to ecological farming’.
‘I am a farmer ever since I have known myself’. That is how José defines himself , son and brother of farmers, a clear example of what is known as ‘family agriculture’ and expert producer of pepper, watermelon and melon, which are produced in the 16 hectares of ecological farming greenhouses which are mostly in Adra and the other part in Balanegra.
His family, his father, acquired the land little by little, but the agricultural patrimony of the family has not stopped growing until now that his mother, his two sisters and him work there. ‘Mi father started with a terrace and we have now reached 16 hectares, growing little by little, working a lot and learning day by day.
José Miguel talks about working on the field, highlighting that ‘we wake up everyday before the sun comes out and we check every greenhouse, the risk, the plants, the needs that each one has, if there is a plague and, in general, the condition of the crops’.
The 16 hectares of the family are ecological farming. Why? ‘Everything started because we thought that we needed to change something. We saw that it was not productive to cultivate with chemical products, although at the beginning it was a little bit scary’.
We knew about someone who had an ecological cultivation and we saw that it was possible. We prepared ourselves with curses and we tried out only in 4 hectares. The first year, we saw that it was feasible and then we did the change into ecological the next year. Today there are 16 hectares that we work with that are ecological’, states José Miguel.
…We have been through different companies… until we tried with Agroponiente. The truth is that there are a lot of differences […] price above everything.
The past years, the Manzano family had tried Agroponiente. José Miguel explains that ‘we have been through different companies and thanks to a technician, expert on ecological, we decided to try with Agroponiente. The truth is that we have realized that there is a lot of differences between Agroponiente and the rest of the firms that we have tried, price above everything.
First we tried only with a part of our production, after that we did it with everything. The
re are lots of services that they offer and other businesses do not, they always have centers near the farmer. I think that right now it is the best company to commercialize ecological production’.