Imphal: As in past years, airlifting of fresh organic pineapples grown in different parts of Manipur has begun for this year as well from Sunday. The first consignment of 1.2 MT to Gurgaon and Jaipur was flagged off by Additional Chief Secretary P. Vaiphei from Bir Tikendrajit International Airport.
Krooshi Karma Naturals Private Limited, Imphal in collaboration with Manipur Organic Mission Agency (MOMA) has set a target to export at least 250 metric ton (MT) of pineapple to Gurgaon, Chandigarh, Mumbai, Delhi, Bangalore and Jaipur. It will benefit around 900 farmers. From 2018 to 2020, airlifting and marketing of pineapples outside the State had benefited more than Rs. 78 lakhs to organic farmers of the State. The efforts of the firm and MOMA shall boost the confidence of farmers during COVID-19 pandemic. Last year, around 220 MT was exported.
Apart from pineapples, the company has also been marketing Kiwi fruit and avocado outside the State since 2018. It has made huge strides in facilitating and enabling a business ecosystem for pineapple marketing by increasing linkage between organic pineapple growers and buyers every year. The support of MOMA in terms of assistance towards local transportation, connecting organic farmers and provision of corrugated boxes to the firm has been pivotal in the success of this venture. The pineapple being marketed is mainly the Queen variety, cultivated in Thayong, Andro, Chiru-Waithou areas.
Fresh queen pineapples of the State have good demands in different markets of the country. It may also be highlighted that various firms have marketed more than 800 MT of fresh fruits and spices outside the State this year with institutional support from MOMA benefitting a large number of farmers of the State.
Speaking at the occasion, P. Vaiphei said that there is nothing to worry for farmers’ now. Under a market intervention scheme, he said, the State Government had created a corpus fund of Rs. 3 crore to buy all the horticulture products from farmers and store it in cold storages for supply to different markets. He said that it is a matter of satisfaction that with dedicated efforts from MOMA, Manipur had been able to export organic pineapples to different cities for the fourth consecutive year despite facing COVID-19 pandemic. The Additional Chief Secretary also urged the farmers to contact MOMA to sell their produce.
MOMA Project Director K. Devdutta Sharma and Imphal Airport Director Alok Nath were also seated on the dais as dignitaries.