Buyers throng Himachal markets with arrival of apples

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Shimla, July 18 (ANI): Early varieties of apples arrived in markets, attracting buyers from across the country to Himachal Pradesh.

According to the farmers, the state witnessed good rains this month, which is helpful for the apples to attain optimum size and enough sweetness.

"Last year the production was good in few areas of the state, but mostly it was destroyed. This year apple production is good as there was enough rain in the state," said Dharambir Dhami, former Chairman of the Fruit Grower Association.

As compared to last year's 49,080 metric tonnes of apple production this year the production is 1, 57,000 metric tonnes.

There is around 40 to 50 percent increase in apple production this year; however, hailstorms at various places in the state had affected the crop.

"This year the setting of apple was good, proper moisture was there as there were enough rains. This year our initial estimate was 2, 11,792 metric tonnes of total production of all the fruits. But due to hailstorms in the month of May and June, the farming of apple and pear was affected," said S K Gupta, Deputy Director of Himachal Pradesh Horticulture Department.

"So now our estimate of the production of all the fruits was 1, 71,218 metric tonnes, out of which apple production is 1, 57,000 metric tonnes," he added.

Varieties like Red Gold, Red June and Tydeman's Early Worcester have reached the markets.

Cartons of the fruit have already been dispatched to Delhi, Chandigarh, Punjab and Haryana and are fetching good prices.

Apple growers are initially getting Rs. 50 to Rs. 60 per kilogram in the market. (ANI)

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