Srinagar: Complementing the ground situation fast returning to normal in Jammu and Kashmir, the Kashmiri apples too have also become sweeter for their growers– metaphorically if not literally, as the Government has upwardly revised the procurement prices of all grades of Kashmiri apples.
The apple prices have been revised under the Market Intervention Scheme (MIS) by National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India Ltd (NAFED), which is the nodal agency for procuring apples, and is assisted by J&K Department of Horticulture Marketing and Planning (J&KDHMP) in registering and grading of apples at four procurement centres in Kashmir.
The scheme was announced by the J&K government on August 12 in view of the lockdown and communication blockade in Kashmir.
Apples are cultivated on 3.87 lakh hectares in Kashmir. Being the mainstay of the state economy, It fetches Rs 8,000 crore annually and supports seven lakh families. Kashmir contributes 75 per cent of the apples produced in India.
The apple variety prices have been fixed at Rs 58 per kilogram for Grade A, Rs 42 per Kg for Grade B and Rs 22 for Grade C with cardboard grass packing.
Similarly, Rs 59, Rs 43 and Rs 23 per kilogram have been fixed for Grade A, Grade B, and Grade C with cardboard tray packing. The prices for wood grass packing have been fixed at Rs 60, Rs 44 and Rs 24 per kilogram for Grade A, Grade B and Grade C respectively.
For American Apple variety Rs 47 per kilogram have been fixed for Grade A, Rs 31 per Kg for Grade B and Rs 17 for Grade C with cardboard grass packing. The prices for wood grass packing have been fixed at Rs 48, Rs 32 and Rs 18 per kilogram for Grade A, Grade B and Grade C respectively.
Similarly, Rs 39, Rs 24 and Rs 18 per kilogram have been fixed for Grade A, Grade B and Grade C Maharaji apple variety with cardboard grass packing. Whereas, wood grass packing prices have been fixed at Rs 40, Rs 25 and Rs 19 per kilogram for Grade A, Grade B and Grade C respectively.
NAFED Chairman meets J&K Governor
Meanwhile, the Chairman of NAFED, Dr Bijender Singh met Governor Satya Pal Malik at the Raj Bhavan.
In the meeting, Singh briefed Governor about the initiatives of the NAFED for promotion of co-operative marketing of agricultural produce. The better price realisation for small and marginal farmers and the diversification of its activities to make available essential items of daily need to the consumers at affordable rates.
They also had discussion about the ongoing process of procurement and marketing of the apple produce from J&K by the NAFED and its benefit to the apple growers who will be getting many times more remuneration for various grades of apple.