Pomegranate export peaks suddenly

Mar 29, 2014, 09:23 IST | Richa Pinto

The quantity of the red fruit exported to Gulf countries from Maharashtra has doubled from 500 to 1,000 tonnes in the past fortnight

There has been a sudden and sharp rise in the quantities of pomegranate being exported to the Gulf countries in the past fortnight. The quantity of the fruit exported has doubled from 500 to 1,000 tonnes, claim traders, much of which is being shipped out in containers. Exporters have attributed this trend to an abundance of local production of the fruit.

Kaniaya Nishad, an exporter, said, “In India, pomegranate is commercially cultivated in Solapur, Sangli, Nashik, Ahmednagar, Pune, Dhule, Aurangabad, Satara, Osmanabad and Latur districts of Maharashtra; Bijapur, Belgaum and Bagalkot districts of Karnataka, and to a smaller extent in Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu.” He added, “Presently, however, large quantities of the produce are coming in from Maharashtra.”

Retail costlier
He continued, “The pomegranate is a 12-month fruit, but suddenly the quantities have shot up. Although the fruit is being sold for Rs 120 a kg in the wholesale market, the retail price is much higher. Only those fruits which are 200-500 gram in weight are being exported.”

Traders also say that there has been a dip in the quantity of pomegranates from Pakistan, which usually compete with Indian produce in the Gulf countries. Since the fruit has a water-laden pulp, it is in great demand in the West Asian countries, where temperatures usually soar at this time of the year.

Ram Morde, a trader, said, “The fruit is used to make juices, so it is popular in summer. The export of mangoes has not started in bulk, and till that starts, this may continue to find many takers. However, once the peak season of mangoes sets in, one would have to see how much chance the fruit stands.”

Did you know?
Iran is the largest producer of pomegranate in the world

Cost of pomegranates in the wholesale market

Maharashtra’s contribution towards the country’s total pomegranate production

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