Bengal's Malda mango exports hit, sellers getting better prices in domestic market

Exports of mangoes from West Bengal's Malda district have been hit this year as exporters have failed to secure remunerative prices from overseas buyers, while sellers are getting lucrative prices in the domestic market, officials said on Saturday.
Bengal's Malda mango exports hit
Bengal's Malda mango exports hit

Kolkata | Exports of mangoes from West Bengal's Malda district have been hit this year as exporters have failed to secure remunerative prices from overseas buyers, while sellers are getting lucrative prices in the domestic market, officials said on Saturday.

Importers from the UK and the UAE had initially shown interest, which could not materialise in shipments due to price disagreements, they said.

Sellers, however, are getting good responses from the domestic market as around 17 tonnes of Malda mangoes were sold between Rs 100 and Rs 150 a kg in an expo in Delhi, the officials said.

Wholesale prices surged by 50-80 per cent due to a combination of low-crop and high-quality produce.

"This year, export deals were scrapped by buyers from the UK and Dubai, who initially showed interest but couldn't meet our price demands," Malda Deputy Director of Horticulture Samanta Layek to PTI.

West Bengal Exporters' Coordination Committee general secretary Ujjwal Saha said there was some progress for shipments of 1,300 kgs of the Himsagar variety in the first tranche, but importers couldn't agree on the price in the final stage of negotiations.

Sellers in Malda were unable to export their mangoes for the past two years, and the efforts to break this trend did not succeed this time, he said.

Layek said mango prices soared this year due to a drastic fall in production caused by heatwaves and unseasonal rains.

"Production was down by 60 per cent this year due to adverse climatic conditions. The output was 2.2 lakh tonnes as compared to 3.79 lakh tonnes in 2023," he said.

Fazli, Himsagar, Laxmanbhog, Langra and Amrapalli are varieties of mangoes available in Malda.

Known for its sweet taste and rich aroma, the Himsagar variety of mango has no fibre and is considered one of the best mangoes available in India.

Mango growers in Malda require greater hand-holding from the government to manage pesticide use and better processing and storage facilities to maintain quality for exports, Saha said.

However, the Delhi Mango Festival saw a massive response with "17 tonnes of Malda mangoes fetched good prices", Layek said.

"Malda mangoes were sold between Rs 100 and 150 a kg," he added.

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