Wednesday 30th May 2012, 10:04 London
Second earthquake hits Italy hard
Damage to agribusiness estimated at half a billion euros as key fresh produce region Emilia-Romagna dusts itself down again
The impact of yesterday's second earthquake in the Italian region of Emilia-Romagna in the space of just over a week is slowly becoming clear, according to reports emerging from the country.
Farming organisation Coldiretti said the damage caused to commercial facilities, machinery and other operations within the agribusiness sector could rise to as high as €500m, and called for adequate insurance protection to be granted in order to safeguard the livelihoods of those affected.
According to Italiafruit News, the situation for many fruit and vegetable producers in areas to the south of Modena, around Ferrara and even across the regional border in Mantua, Lombardy, remains "critical" and many were apparently planning to spend the night away from their homes.
While last week's tremors caused relatively little damage to buildings and structures used by businesses in Emilia-Romagna's sizeable fresh produce industry, the new tremors have caused a greater amount of disruption.
A packhouse facility operated by Italfrutta, a division of Apo Conerpo business unit Agrintesa, sustained further damage that compounded a partial collapse during the first earthquake and was said to be out of commission while a survey of the structure was carried out.
Salvi Unacoa and Gruppo Mazzoni, two major fresh produce exporters based near Ferrara, both emerged unscathed from the second quake, likewise melon specialist Francescon in Mantua.
"Everywhere, however, worry and fear are affecting the performance of routine activities," Italiafruit News added.