India: Sangli grapes to be exported to EU-7/JAN /2015
Grapes on as many as 5,000 acres of plantation land in Sangli district are all set to be exported to European Union (EU) countries. Sangli district is the second largest exporter of grapes in the state after Nashik. It is not yet clear how much grapes will be exported in tonnes. The final figures will be available after seven days.
Rajendra Ghuli, president of Sangli district grape growers’ association, said, “Grapes on some 5,000 acres will be exported to EU countries for which preparations are on. The farmers have registered their farms with the district agriculture office as export potential. The preparations before harvest are going on. By next week, packed grapes will be transported to Mumbai for export purpose. The grapes in Sangli district have received comparatively less damage from the unseasonal rainfall and hailstorms in December last year.”
Nitin Deval, secretary of the association, said, “Grape growers from Solapur district have reported major losses. However, the affected farmers are not very large in numbers. Tasgaon, Kavathe-Mahankal and Jath regions in Sangli are growing grapes for years. Fortunately, they did not receive showers this season. Grape as a crop is very delicate and vulnerable to variations in climate.”
Ghuli said the period of maturity of grapes has been delayed by a week, but termed such variations normal. “It happens once in 3-4 years and we have to cope up with it. The market scene for grape growers is positive because of higher prices. However, the customers find it over-priced,” he added.
Fresh grapes are sold at Rs 70-110 per kg in the retail market in Kolhapur. Black grapes fetch a better price - Rs 85-125 per kg. The prices are high as it is just the beginning of the season. “The rates will come down further by at least Rs 20 per kg. However, the customers will have to wait for at least three weeks for the prices to decline,” said Nandkumar Walanju, a city-based fruit