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Monday, June 1, 2015
Local mangoes make inroads into North India
Times of India, June 1, 2015 Minati Singha,TNN | Jun 1, 2015, 11.26 AM IST
BHUBANESWAR: The state government has started sending mangoes to Delhi, Bokaro, Lucknow, Allahabad, Varanasi and other North Indian cities with Odisha harvesting a bumper crop.
The state-run Dhenkanal Fruit and Vegetables Marketing Company Limited (DFVMCL), which collects and markets mango, is exporting about 5 to 10 tonne outside the state every day, official sources said.
"The company is collecting mangoes from farmers of 10 districts," said horticulture director Susant Nanda. The minimum support price (MSP) for mango has been fixed at Rs 20, he said, adding, "But since the mangoes are being sold at a higher price outside, we are giving the profit to the farmers."
The state produces around 8 to 10 lakh metric tonne (MT) of mango of over 200 varieties in major mango-growing districts of Dhenkanal, Angul, Deogarh, Keonjhar, Mayurbhanj, Sonepur, Jajpur and Cuttack. Besides, Kandhamal, Kalahandi and Rayagada districts also pitch in with late harvest.
Farmers in some districts have alleged that due to lack of proper storage facilities they are forced to sell mangoes at a lower price.
"There is no proper channel for collection and marketing of mangoes. The horticulture department has been collecting mangoes from big orchards but small farmers are facing problems," said Antaryami Sahu, a farmer of Jajpur district.
The horticulture officers said mangoes cannot be kept in cold storages for more than 15 days, so cold storage would not have helped much. "At the DFVMS, the mangoes are kept in four ripening chambers, each having capacity of 15 metric tonne, for four days for uniform colour and better taste," said a senior officer of the department.
Some popular varieties of Odisha like Dussehri, Baldev and Himsagar ripe about 90 days earlier than other mango-growing states like Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra and Andhra Pradesh. So our homegrown mangoes are capturing these markets, the officer added.
The state also exported to Bangladesh, Japan and Finland while a major chunk of it was consumed Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and West Bengal. The demand for mangoes is also huge in Bhubaneswar, Berhampur, Rourkela and Sambalpur.