One of the major mandarin orange exporting regions, Samtse is yet to really get started as exporters are unable to import the wooden boxes to pack their products from India.
The customs officials across the border in Chamarchi have asked the Indian exporters for the phytosanitary certificate from the National Plant Protection Office, in order to comply with the International Standards for Phytosanitary Measures.
Adhikari Export’s proprietor in Samtse, Dadiram Adhikari said the exporters had planned to export the oranges from December 5 onwards. “But we haven’t been able to do so,” he said. “This is a very big problem.”
Dadiram said that there were two truckloads of packing boxes across the border unable to cross in absence of the certificate. The exporter also said that the orange export would fail if this issue was not solved in the coming week. Fruit quality has already started to drop.
“Luckily, we didn’t pluck the fruits from the trees. If we had, they would have rotted away,” he said, adding that the plucking is done after 24-48 hours of preparing the packing boxes.
Meanwhile, exporters said that they have informed the Bhutan Agriculture and Food Authority (BAFRA) and Bhutan Exporters Association. As reported on kuenselonline.com, the matter has also been taken to the government.
Photo source: Danette Carnahan | Dreamstime.com