As incessant hail and rain destroyed many apple blossoms back in May, there is now a drastic reduction in apple yields in India’s Karnali province. As a result, apple prices have gone up. Farmers in the area complain about scant production and lost income. Most of the produce from remote areas has to be airlifted to nearby markets, which makes transfer of low volumes unfeasible.
Theannapurnaexpress.com reports how in the Karnali region, most apples are grown in Jumla, which produced 12,000 tons last year. This year, only 5,000 tons have been produced. Chief of the Agriculture Development Office, Jumla, Bala Karam Devkota says apple prices have gone up after the decline in production. In Jumla, per/kg prices have been fixed at Rs 160 for A grade, Rs 155 for B grade and Rs 150 for C grade apples. According to Devkota, apple prices may further increase due to declining supply.
Kashmir apple crops hit by drought and Corona
In Kashmir, three months of drought -on top of the effects of the pandemic- have led to a sharp drop in the quantity and quality of fruit and vegetables grown in the region. And customers are paying for it.
The regional meteorological department in Srinagar, Kashmir’s main city, said in September the region had experienced its biggest rain shortfall in 78 years, with 54% less than the average between June and August. At the same time, Kashmir’s five-month lockdown to slow the spread of Covid-19 made it difficult for farmers to access and apply pesticides and fungicides, leaving their crops vulnerable to diseases and pests, experts and officials said.
[ Rs100 = €1.20 ]