Mangoes may cost 50-65% more due to unseasonal rains
Relishing mangoes this summer will cost a lot more as prices of the fruit have shot up by 50-65 per cent as supplies have been hit following unseasonal rain that caused production loss.
The study by industry body Assocham said lower-end varieties are selling at Rs 100 a kg in retail markets while the premium variety Alphonso is selling at Rs 500-600 per dozen in Mumbai due to unseasonal rain that led to a production loss of up to 50 per cent in some states. “Mango crop suffered the onslaught of repeated rain accompanied by hailstorm and strong winds from end January till early April, 2015 in North and Central India, resulting in huge loss.”
“Prices have shot up by 50-65 per cent, at a much higher pace than other fruits and vegetables,” the study said. The maximum damage is reported in Uttar Pradesh, which produces the largest variety of mangoes in over a dozen belts like Malihabad, Shahabad, Aloha, Unnao, Bulandshahr, Hardoi, Barabanki and Saharanpur, it added. Preliminary estimates point towards a minimum loss of 20 per cent on production, it said, adding that in some pockets of Uttar Pradesh the loss is estimated at over 50 per cent.
With an output of four million tonnes, Uttar Pradesh contributes about one-fourth of India’s production, which is likely to fall to 15 million tonnes this season, the study said, adding that the situation in Maharashtra and other central Indian states is equally bad. “Various state governments have announced relief measures and financial compensation. They are not sufficient to mitigate farmers’ losses and also curb rising prices. More needs to be done to help farmers,” Assocham Secretary General D S Rawat said.
As per the study, Andhra Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh together account for about half of the total mangoes produced in India with both the states accounting for almost similar share of over 24 per cent. Karnataka (10 per cent)and Bihar (7.6 per cent) are among the top five states with high share in mangoes’ production. The study said the production losses are likely to impact exports of the fruit from India.