Orange prices to stay high due to low production: PBF

November 21, 2022

Orange prices are expected to stay high in the coming months as their production has decreased by almost 50% due to various reasons. According to the Vice President of the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS) Ahmad Jawad, orange production decreased because of canal water scarcity and higher-than-normal temperatures during the flowering stage of the plant.

He informed that exports of oranges (Kinnow) will start from the first week of December with the farm price set at PKR 2000 per mound. He added that the State Bank should facilitate the export of oranges through the timely issuance of E-forms and clearance from the banks.

Russian and Iranian markets, he said, remain untapped because the State Bank has failed to open banking channels with both the countries for the last couple of years. Iran can import up to 80,000 tons of Kinnows whereas the Russia-Belarus market can import up to 100,000 tons if proper banking channels are opened with them.

He further informed that the average annual harvest of citrus fruits was 2.4 million tons, accounting for 30% of the total food production in the country. The production of citrus fruits has been increasing by almost 1.5% annually for the last two decades and their exports have increased by 17% annually.

Ahmad Jawad said that China-Pakistan Horticulture Research and Demonstration Centre (CPHRDC), a collaboration between Huazhong Agricultural University (HZAU) and the University of Agriculture, Faisalabad (UAF), has also started its operations.

CPHRDC is an international research center specializing in various areas, including fruit and vegetable breeding, labor-saving and high-quality horticultural crop production, post-harvest management, and greenhouse production. In Pakistan, the center will conduct educational events and workshops along with cutting-edge research in horticulture.

It will help farmers increase their productivity and managing the changing climate accordingly. Its main research areas include horticultural production techniques, implementation of joint projects on horticultural production, and cooperation in the development of new varieties.

Research projects under CPHRDC for the year 2023-24 include citrus variety evaluation, popularization, the R&D demonstration of high-quality production technology, research and training on post-harvest quality maintenance and standardization of post-harvest operation of citrus fruits, research on germplasm enhancement and cultivar extension of solanaceous vegetables, and landscape horticulture management and construction technology.

Credit : Independent News Pakistan-WealthPk