22 January, 2021

COVIDED! Tears For Mango Growers, Alphonso Hardest Hit By Weather, Low Online Sales

The sale of mangoes has been blighted by the coronavirus pandemic. Lack of proper transportation and supply has impacted the trade of the quickly perishable fruit

COVIDED! Tears For Mango Growers, Alphonso Hardest Hit By Weather, Low Online Sales

If there is one consolation to the demoralising heat of the Indian summer, it’s the sight of the pyramids of mangoes on carts and fruit stalls—an invitation to a luscious, fleshly sensual experience. Then there are the many varieties, the texture of each exploding with its distinctive sensory signal on the palate. It’s approaching midway of the Indian mango season, but for growers of premium and export-oriented varieties such as Alphonso, Safeda, and Banganappalli, among others, there is little joy. Yields were below expectation to start with, a rise in costs dampened moods, and the blight of COVID-19 delivered the coup de grace—distribution, important for a perishable commodity, became tedious. While farmers’ incomes plummeted, consumers end up paying higher-than-usual prices.

“The late monsoon resulted in lesser yield, which was 50-70 per cent lower for many of us,” says Prasad Subhash Jadav, a grower. He adds, “Due to the lockdown, we did not get good prices for the early-harvested crop.” In Ratnagiri (Maharashtra),...



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