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Indian mango growers already worrying about export prospects amid pandemic

Ahead of the official start of India’s mango export season, uncertainty looms large over the prospects of this fruit making its way to the US. As the Covid-19 pandemic continues, questions are being raised on whether the phytosanitary inspector from the US would be able to reach India before the start of the export season.

Before Indian mangoes can be sent to the US, a phytosanitary inspector has to be present to check the fruits. US import norms mandate that the fruit should be irradiated before making its way to overseas markets. The inspector, who is stationed at Vashi’s wholesale market, chooses fruits in random and cuts them open to identify pests like stone-borer etc.

A senior officer of the Maharashtra State Agricultural Marketing Board (MSAMB) said a few options are being worked out in case the inspector is not able to come here. “The inspection can be held on camera, with the US inspector watching it in real time, or the irradiated mango can be shipped out to the USA where it can be checked,” said the officer.


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