Strawberries arrive in Pune amid falling output and quality

Maharashtra is called the land of strawberries, and Pune as a city certainly has a great love for strawberries. As Pune starts to receive its first batch of strawberries this season, it seems that the unseasonal rainfall, while adversely affecting the fruit’s quality as well as output, has not dampened its popularity in the city.

However, quoted Balasheb Bhilare, head of the Strawberry Growers’ Association of Maharashtra, as saying:

“This year, the strawberry production will be low. The unseasonal rain has damaged the crop. The quality is down as well. We aren’t even sure that we will get 40 per cent of the expected output.”

On Sunday, street fruit vendors, bakeries and cafes were all geared up for the strawberry season. Strawberry cakes, pastries, shakes and tarts have all hit the market. “I sell a 200 gram box for Rs 50. Though there has been a slight decline in the quality, the sales are still good. People love this fruit,” said Santosh Naik, a fruit vendor on Bhandarkar Road.

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