Frost wipes out fruit crops

Heavy snowfall in northern Greece on Monday and the ensuing frost have wiped out the entire fruit crop for this year in central and western Macedonia, officials said yesterday. The loss of the crop, mainly of peaches, apricots, apples and pears, also spells financial ruin for northern Greece’s buoyant fruit-canning industry, which is the largest in the world. «The destruction is massive,» Deputy Agriculture Minister Evangelos Argyris, who visited the afflicted areas yesterday, told journalists. He promised that farmers would be fully compensated. Ministry inspectors said the entire fruit crop had been lost in the prefectures of Imathia, Pella, Pieria, Halkidiki and Kavala, where trees had been in blossom. Temperatures rose in most of northern Greece yesterday, although Kato Nevrokopi near Drama still registered a low of minus 10 degrees Celsius (14 Fahrenheit). Meanwhile, Egyptian fisheries worker Hamiz Kadu, 72, was found frozen to death in a ship’s container near Kavala late on Tuesday.