The Region of Murcia leads the production of lettuces in Spain one more year, with 16,000 hectares of the 35,000 dedicated to this vegetable. Murcia not only tops this ranking again, but becomes a promoter of the virtues that come with consuming this and other leafy vegetables with its campaign “Lettuces and salads of the Region of Murcia”, highlighting the healthy contributions they have on our diet and our health.
The importance of lettuce in our country is reflected in the figures as one of the largest producers in the entire European Union. Murcia, Almería or Valencia are the territories that have always led the list of producing territories being ideal spaces for cultivation, favored by their temperate areas and by the Mediterranean climate.
The two main milestones that have driven the growth of production in Murcia are the Trasvase Tajo-Segura in the 80s and the introduction of the iceberg variety. In fact, 82% of the production belongs to the Iceberg variety and the remaining 18% to the Romana and other varieties.
As for the export of this product, lettuce is the third most exported vegetable in Spain with 760,000 tonnes exported and in a clear positive evolution. 80% of this product is consumed within the European Union, particularly in countries such as Germany, the United Kingdom, France, the Netherlands and Italy.
68% of the total volume exported is linked to the Region of Murcia. These 510,000 tons make lettuce the most outstanding export product of the Murcian orchard. The management of Proexport, the Association of Fruit and Vegetable Producers-Exporters of the Region of Murcia, believes that it is the continuous research that has allowed to put on the table new varieties, highly valued in many corners of the Old Continent. In the Region of Murcia alone, there are 14 centers of fruit and vegetable experimentation.
Lettuce is a healthy vegetable of delicate leaves, very sensitive to cold, so it is grown in temperate areas, mainly outdoors, but also in greenhouses. There are more than 20,000 known species, but only a small percentage are cultivated thanks to research and continuous trials. Some of them are Roman, iceberg, batavia, trocadero, oak leaf and lollo rosso. In addition to being low-calorie, lettuce is high in water and low in fat, also giving us vitamins C, E, antioxidants and fiber. Without a doubt, a product 10 that is admired both within our borders and outside.