For the first time, Banarasi mangoes are being exported to London, Dubai and other parts of the world under Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA) supervision, according to the Union Ministry of Commerce and Industry.
A consignment of 1.2 and 3 metric tonnes of mangoes were dispatched from Varanasi for London and Dubai respectively. Moreover, 520 metric tonnes of regional rice, 3 metric tonnes of fresh vegetables and 80 MT of regional rice were exported to Qatar, London and Australia respectively during the Covid pandemic in 2020, after APEDA’s intervention.
The export of the first trial shipment of 14 MT green chilly was facilitated by APEDA from Varanasi to Dubai’s Jebel Ali Port in December 2019.
With its assistance, Uttar Pradesh’s Purvanchal region emerged as a new hub for India’s agricultural products exports through development of the Varanasi Agri-Export Hub. In the last six months, about 20,000 MT of agri-produce was exported from Purvanchal region, the ministry said.
Working in close collaboration with the Ministry of Commerce & Industry, the APEDA has taken several initiatives in making landlocked Purvanchal region as a new destination of agri-export activities through development of Varanasi Agri – Export Hub (VAEH).
It has identified potential districts of Uttar Pradesh to be covered under the VAEH. The Purvanchal division covers districts of Varanasi, Mirzapur, Azamgarh, Prayagraj, Gorakhpur, Basti, Ghazipur, Jaunpur, Chandauli and Sant Ravidas Nagar.
Varanasi and nearby areas witnessed an export of around 12 MT, 22 MT and 45 MT in the months of October, November, December respectively in the year 2021. Also, around 125 MT have been exported from Varanasi and nearby areas, the ministry said.
As Varanasi is a territory based in the plains of river Ganges, it has rich nutritional composition of soil with ample amount of fertility which leads to production of good quality agri-produce.
The region also has reputed institutions of central and international level such as Indian Institute of Vegetable Research (IIVR), International Rice Research Institute (IRRI), Banaras Hindu University (BHU).
The newly established international airport in Kushinagar may play a vital role in triggering the export. The DDU Gorakhpur University, Indian Institute of Seed Science, Mau are the institutions actively working towards promotion of agri- activities in the region.
After the Government’s initiatives, many success stories emerged to boost the morale of farmers of Purvanchal region.
Trisagar Farmer Producer Company Ltd, which is based in Sant Ravidas Nagar district, has started sending shipments on a daily basis to the international market after the intervention of APEDA.
In another success story, Gazipur district-based Shivansh Krishak Producer Company Ltd with a base of 1,500 progressive farmers has managed to get a decent realisation for its commodities after exporting a good volume of agri-produce.
Similarly, Varanasi-based FPO Jaya Seed Farmer Producer Company Ltd, which grows mangoes in around 50 acres, is getting higher price as compared to average price of the market after the intervention of APEDA.
Prior to the initiative taken by APEDA, the FPC used to sell mangoes at an average price of Rs 25/kg, but in recent season they have sold it at Rs 50/kg to a Netherland-based company named Super Plum having few outlets in Bangalore and Mumbai.