Chilean government declares agricultural emergency in La Araucanía after eruption of Villarrica volcano

After leading the Emergency Committee before the eruption of the Villarrica volcano in southern Chile this morning (3am local time), the President of the Nation, Michelle Bachelet, announced that it will declare an agricultural emergency in La Araucanía, given the effect that the eruption could have on the fields and animals.

The president, who toured the area, said the decree "will allow more support to farmers".

However, a producer of blueberries in the region said that, so far, the eruption of the massif has had little impact on the fruit industry, although the melting of snow has the potential to cause flooding or landslides in some areas.

Patricio Rebolledo from Patagonia Foods explained to our environment that a large part of the production of the season has already come to an end, leaving only a small amount of fruit to be harvested.

"So far it has not had any effect on our fruit, nor in the form of ashes or any type of event", He says.

"The only problem is that today there is no work for the workers of the field because they can not move around the area. The police are not letting people pass from Freire to Villarrica, or from Villarrica to Pucón".

"We have to wait and see what happens with the melted snow, if it flows into the streams in the area and causes some flooding. But here it has not rained for three months so there is not much snow in general"He added.

Apart from his own garden, Rebolledo said he has not heard from other producers who are being affected by the event.

Speaking to the local press, Bachelet said that in the last hours the volcano "has calmed down", But that the permanent monitoring of the massif will be maintained, as well as the warnings that were decreed to protect the population.

The last time the Villarrica volcano erupted was in 1984.

 

Source: Fruit Portal

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