Traders face shortage in apples after J&K flood washes away crops
Mumbaikars may have to shell out more to buy apples for the coming Navratri festival after the Jammu and Kashmir flood destroyed the entire apple crop in the region
While traders at Vashi’s Agricultural Produce Market Committee (APMC) had assured that the city will not fall short of apples, the recent floods in Jammu and Kashmir has overturned their prediction, after the apple crop of the region was destroyed. For now, the wholesale market is not receiving any supply from the state. While the fruit supply from Shimla is expected to last only for a few days, traders are currently storing apples coming from Himachal in cold storage for future demand.
In short supply: The next batch from Himachal Pradesh is not expected to arrive at APMC before the first week of October
“Presently, apples are coming from Kinnaur (Himachal Pradesh), but traders and middlemen are stocking the produce as the demand-supply ratio has been affected due to floods. Therefore, the price of apples is expected to increase, especially during Navratri festival,” said Deepak Jaiswal, fruit trader and owner of Jaiswal International fruit shop.
Traders informed that usually at this time of the year, the market receives regular supply of apples. However, with the flood situation in J&K and untimely climatic conditions in Kinnaur, the supply of apples has been delayed.
Vinod Mehta, a farmer from Chaupal (Himachal Pradesh), said, “The flower of the fruit has taken a longer time to blossom as the region was covered in dew. Therefore, the supplies have been delayed and the first batch is not expected to reach APMC before the first week of October.”
The delay comes as bad news for the city, where the demand for apples increases during the fasting period of Navratri. With the delay in supply, people may have to shell out more money for the fruit. On Friday, APMC received only four trucks of apples, as compared to the usual supply of 25-30 trucks.
Wholesale rate of apple per kilogram
Retail price of apples per kilogram (depending on quality and size)
More than 1,27,000 people have been rescued from the flood-ravaged parts of Jammu and Kashmir so far, as the relief operations launched by the Armed forces enters 12th day today.
According to the Defence spokesperson, 89 transport aircrafts and helicopters of Indian Air Force and Army Aviation Corps have been pressed into service. However, with the water level receding in river Jhelum, the threat of an epidemic outbreak in Kashmir is increasing, as there is massive shortage of medicines and vaccines in the flood-affected areas of the valley.