Pakistan’s mango industry is bracing for a down season with problems such as Covid-19, locusts and poor weather contributing to decreased production and demand.
According to a report from Reuters, growers have reported falls in production ranging from 15-30 per cent.
Abdul Waheed, head of the All Pakistan Fruit and Vegetable Exporters, Importers and Merchants Association, highlighted the effect poor weather and climate change shifting the harvest seasons.
“This change in weather conditions has weakened the resistance of mangoes to fight diseases,” Waheed told Reuters. “It ultimately damages mangoes at a large scale.”
“We are seeing such a bad, uncertain situation in this field for the first time in three generations of my family business,” he added.
The report said this year Punjab, which produces about 70 per cent of Pakistan’s mangoes, has seen production fall more than 35 per cent while volumes in Sindh province are down 15 per cent.
Muhammad Ansar, a grower from Sindh province, told Reuters his mango production had fallen 30 per cent this year as a result of locust attacks, a challenge further compounded by hardly any demand for export.
“We face double problems this year: the low production followed by less demand in markets due to the prolonged lockdown because of coronavirus,” Ansar said.
Ahmad Jawad, chair of Pakistan’s agriculture standing committee for the chamber of commerce, said the country is expecting to export around 100,000 tonnes of mangoes this year, a drop of 30,000 from 2019.
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