The Indian government’s decision to allow Iranian apples into the country at the beginning of 2013 is reportedly putting pressure on the US as it is forced to compete with cheaper competing produce.
"After the arrival of Iranian apples, the price of Washington apples crashed by 20 per cent," trader Rinkle Singh told the Hindustan Times.
US apples, previously sold at a wholesale rate of Rs90-120 (US$1.66-2.21) per kg, had faced little competition at Azadpur. However, the introduction of Iranian fruit, priced at Rs50-70 (US$0.92-1.29) per kg, saw the price for Washington apples cut to Rs60-90 (US$1.11-1.66) per kg.
Chinese apples remain the most popular import and cost Rs40-50 (US$0.74-0.92), while domestically grown apples sell for Rs60-70 (US$1.11-1.29).
Iran has previously had a limited export market for its apple industry, which is valued at approximately US$9.23bn, due to trade restrictions.
Alongside growers and importers of US produce, domestic apple farmers are also reportedly struggling with the added competition. Virbhadra Singh, chief minister of India's biggest apple producing state, Himachal Pradesh, has requested that restrictions be imposed on apple import trade to help local producers.
Omar Abdullah, the chief minister of Jammu and Kashmir, has put forward a similar request.
Of the total number of apples sold in India, 80 per cent are produced locally.