Srinagar, Feb 8: Pune-based NGO Sarhad along with Sopore Apple Farmer Producer Company is organising 1st ever World Apple Conference at Srinagar in June this year.
As per the statement, the conference is being organised in order to better empower the apple growers/ farmers of Jammu and Kashmir who have been facing huge losses due to unprecedented fall in prices of their produce during the last 5-6 seasons.
“Even this year the apple fetched prices below expectations this year leading to losses for farmers across the state. Hence the conference comes just in the right time to explore possible avenues to help mitigate the effect of crop and financial losses to apple farmers owing to unforeseen circumstances such as natural disasters, low crop yield, weak market, and storage issues. Crop insurance, value addition, cold storage, logistics and supply chain management and integration shall be the core focus of the conference,” reads the statement.
“Another major issue faced by the apple growers/farmers is the wastage of crop both premature and post-harvesting. Premature wastage occurs due to fruit drop i.e. fruits falling off of trees before ripening which happens due to various reasons such as pests, adverse weather and climatic conditions. Post-harvest wastage can occur when the crop goes unsold due to lower prices and ultimately goes to waste or when the produce does not reach the target markets on time and turns rotten due to unfavourable transport, storage and warehousing facilities.”
“Potential solutions to such issues such as strengthening of highway transport and logistics in the form of better roadways and highways could help mitigate the problem of produce reaching the markets on time. Cold storage could help arrest the ripening of crops and buy more time for the produce to reach the markets.”
Eminent researchers and academics in the relevant fields shall be a part of the same and contribute to solutions for the fundamental issues being faced by the apple industry as a whole.
The conference is aimed at finding sustainable and long-term solutions to such issues and promote better marketing and supply of Kashmiri apples pan India while also exploring export opportunities for the same.
Sarhad Founder and President, Sanjay Nahar and Sopore Apple Farmer Producers Company Chairman Adil Malik, Vice Chairman Suyog Zende and Directors Shailesh Pagariya and Ramdas Khopade along with President of Sopore Fruit Mandi, Fayaz Malik have come together to organise this conference under the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmer’s Welfare Government of India from the June 24 to 26 at the Sher-i-Kashmir International Conference Center, Srinagar.