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Juice companies purchase apples at 50 paisa per K G in J

Written by: Staff
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Jammu, Mar 20 (UNI) The apples might be sour for common people who cannot afford it because of its exorbitant rates in the market but the fruit processing companies are buying it at only 50 paisa per kg in Jammu and Kashmir.

The Jammu and Kashmir government today accepted that it purchases the apples at the rate of Rs four per kg from the apple growers, and selling to fruit processing units at 50 paisa per kg thereby incurring a loss of Rs 3.50 per kg.

Minister of Agriculure Abdul Aziz Zargar told the State Legislative Council, while replying to a question of A G Vakil that the state goverment is forced to sell the apple at a loss because none of the buyers offer rate beyond 50 paisa per kg in the tenders invited for the purpose.

He informed the house that the state government purchased 18,000 tonnes apples last year and incurred a loss of Rs 13 crore because of distressed sale.

The Minister further told the house that a network of collection centres by Directorate of Horticulture have been established for procurement of C-grade apple throughout the valley for direct purchase from the growers.

He added that the primary objective of the scheme is to induce the fruit growers to send only properly graded quality fruit to markets outside the state so that the growers receive better returns for their produce and malpractices in the trade are eliminated.

UNI HVG SC BST1835

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