Almonds from Spain
Naturata Demeter almonds originate from a project in south-eastern Spain.
Almonds from Spain
Naturata Demeter almonds originate from a project in south-eastern Spain. The Alarcon family has been growing them according to organic standards in the region of Albacete since 1999. The entire operation switched to biodynamic methods in 2011.
Ramon Alarcon is actually an architect, but quickly realised that his father's agricultural business gave him more pleasure and has therefore been running the business, together with his father, with much dedication and passion for a number of years now.
The family-run farm covers an area of 725 hectares and borders on the foothills of a nature reserve. A number of things are grown besides the almonds (which alone take up 260 hectares), including olive and walnut trees and various types of grain such as wheat and rye.
Our responsibility to man and nature
From this elevated position in the nature reserve, a spectacular view opens out across the wide expanses of the "La Mancha" region. This is known for its barren, dry soils which make farming extremely difficult. Despite the adverse conditions, the fertility of the soil is preserved and even improved thanks to biodynamic cultivation methods.
What makes the site special is that, alongside the areas under cultivation, there is much fallow land in between. This is allowed to remain untouched and is not subjected to straightening or other man-made interventions.
Pine groves and individual trees are not removed to make way for cultivation due to the proximity of the nature reserve. Land management in tune with nature takes top priority. And so it is possible that a narrow strip of almond trees can be found amidst pine groves, or a single, centuries-old pine tree stands in the middle of an olive grove, even though its shade is not ideal for olive trees.
Due to this form of land management, harvesting entails covering long distances on the 725-hectare site, but this too is readily accepted. The harvested almonds are then transported to a processor in the region who frees the choice nuts of their shells and packs them either whole or processes them into flaked or slivered almonds.
This careful land management in harmony with nature is most impressive: several visits to the farm by Naturata's Management Board and product development specialists have convinced them of the family's commitment and sincerity. It quickly became clear that here was a perfect partner for Naturata who shared the same objectives and values. Plans to extend to other products besides almonds are under consideration.