Vijayawada :The second Covid-19 wave has hit the mango export in Andhra Pradesh with airlines scaling-down flight operations and increasing freight charges. Andhra Pradesh is among the top mango-producing states in India. The majority of the mango growers produce export-quality Banginapalli, China Rasalu, Pedda Rasalu, Totapuri, Neelam, and Suvarnarekha varieties.
Official figures reveal that there are 3,76,494 hectares of land under the mango cultivation in the state. Chittoor district tops the list with 1.12 lakh hectares of land under mango cultivation. Joint Director (Horticulture), Andhra Pradesh M Venkateswarulu said for the first time they have exported 2.5 metric tonnes of mangoes to South Korea from APEDA Tirupati facility this year. Over 66 metric tonnes of Banganapalli and Suvarnarekha mango varieties, which have GI tags, will be exported to South Korea.
The horticulture department with the support of various organizations and exporters will export the mangoes to the UK, Australia, and New Zealand, and Middle East countries in the coming days. "If everything goes as per plans, we will export over 5,000 Metric Tonnes of Mangoes to various countries from Andhra Pradesh in this year. As of now, there were no restrictions on the export of mangoes," he said.
Mango exporters said for the second year in a row, the fruit will be absent in the retail markets across the US. Covid-19 pandemic last year hampered exports. This year too, exports to the US have been hampered. Even orders from Delhi had seen a slump this year due to the virus situation
Freight charges have skyrocketed owing to the pandemic situation in the country. The airlines charge around Rs 2.5 lakh per tonne as freight. "A few years ago the freight charge was Rs1.3 lakh per tonne," said Sanjeev Dirisala of the Andhra Pradesh Agro Integrated Pack House Private Limited, a mango exporter from Andhra Pradesh.
Andhra Pradesh had exported over 1,500 metric tonnes of mangoes to different countries in 2019. The Covid-19 hit hard to mango export in 2020. The quantity of the export depends on various factors. The mango growers and traders will get at least 30 to 40 percent more revenue if their mango produce was exported to foreign countries when compared to the domestic market.