The vagaries of nature has resulted in 35-40% loss to the mango crop in UP
Virendra Singh Rawat | Lucknow
May 14, 2015 Last Updated at 16:20 IST
UP mango output falls by 50% due to untimely rains, hailstorms
Farewell to mango people?
Despite massive loss to the agricultural and horticultural crops due to unseasonal rains and hailstorms, the mangoes grown in Uttar Pradesh are set to tickle the taste buds of patrons in the Gulf and South East Asian countries.
The mango belts in UP comprise Lucknow (Lucknow, Malihabad, Bakshi-ka-Talaab), Saharanpur and Sambhal-Amroha-Muzaffarnagar districts. Lucknow belt spread over 25,000 hectares, which produces world famous Dussehri variety, alone comprises about 30 of the state's annual mango production of 40-42 million tonnes (MT).
Since, the crop damage was extensive in Lucknow and nearby areas, the export consignment would comprise other mango varieties of western UP districts viz. Langda, Chausa, Amprapali, Mallika etc.
These late maturing varieties are likely to be ready for plucking around June 20 and about 100 tonnes are expected to be exported.
"We would export mango to Saudi Arabia, UAE, Kuwait, Japan and Singapore," Shahnaz Exports promoter Nadeem Siddiqui told Business Standard. He is UP's biggest mango exporter. "For the first time, we are sending two containers (around 30 tonnes) to Saudi Arabia to compete with mango exports from Pakistan."
The vagaries of nature has resulted in 35-40% loss to the mango crop in UP. Apart from mango, other rabi crops such as wheat and gram were also damaged across the state.
Due to extensive damage, UP mango production is likely to fall to 25-28 million tonnes MT, Mango Grower Association of India president Insram Ali said and added mango exports from the Lucknow belt would be a remote possibility this season.
Further, mango growers rue the lack of state government support to exporters. Although, the government provides subsidy of Rs 26 per kg (comprising Rs 13 each for brand promotion and air freight), the exporters say it is not sufficient apart from the cumbersome procedures to claim it.
"The farmers in UP are unorganised unlike Maharashtra, where the growers get ample government support and incentives," Siddiqui noted.
The farmers have also long been demanding sops for setting up mango-based food processing industries.