Sixteen stalls in Malaga's Atarazanas market were closed on Thursday. / salvador salas

Hauliers' strike starts to have an effect in shops and markets

Many market stalls in Malaga have had to close due to the lack of fresh produce and some supermarket shelves are empty

JUAN SOTO Malaga

The strike by hauliers which began on Monday is starting to have an effect in Malaga, with a shortage of some basic products. Some food suppliers have had to close down temporarily.

Four days after the start of the action called by the Plataforma en Defensa del Transporte, there are some empty shelves in supermarkets and some market stalls are shut because they have nothing to sell. In the Atarazanas market in Malaga city, for example, 16 stalls in the fresh fish section were closed on Thursday.

Markets hit

“The situation has become much more complicated now because no lorries are coming from outside,” says Andres López, who owns the A&V stall in the market. He decided to open because he has some fish to sell, but no hake, mussels or squid. “Nothing is arriving from Galicia,” he says.

The markets are the final link in the chain and probably the most visible one. At Mercamalaga, the stallholders’ president, Pilar López, says everyone is very worried, because as the action is not officially classified as a strike no minimum services have been established and very little deliveries are being made. Sales have dropped to ridiculous levels, she says: “One stallholder has sold 300 euros of produce when normally at this time of year he would earn 15,000 to 20,000”.

Calls for government to help

Many supermarkets, food stores and their distributors are also being affected, and it is reported that pickets are blocking key points such as ports, fishing wharves and logistics centres and putting pressure on hauliers to persuade them not to work. Representatives in the sector are calling on the government to take urgent action to guarantee that basic supplies can get through.