Fruit growers urging the government to revive the Market Intervention Scheme
Fruit growers urging the government to revive the Market Intervention Scheme

Since there was a lot of C-grade apple production this year, fruit farmers in the Kashmir Valley are pleading with the government to bring back the Market Intervention Scheme (MIS).

Although the valley is well-known for its apples, this year’s harvest has been difficult because of the persistent rains seen during the blossoming stage and the extended dry periods experienced throughout the summer and fall. The size and colour of the apples have suffered as a result of the scab disease brought on by the recent weather.


Farmers were given a lifeline when the late Mufti Muhammad Sayeed’s administration introduced the Minimum Income Support (MIS) programme, which guaranteed a set price for farmers’ goods regardless of damage.

The policy, according to Bashir Ahmad Basheer, president of the All Kashmir Fruit Growers Union, ensures that high-quality food is still available outside of Jammu and Kashmir by purchasing all inferior items at a low rate.

Due to the difficulties caused by the weather, between 30 and 40 percent of this year’s apple crop is considered to be of subpar quality. No real effort has been made to reestablish the MIS plan, despite many petitions sent to the LG administration.

One worried farmer, Javid Ahmad, had this to say: “Horticulture is the backbone of the economy in Jammu and Kashmir.” But this year’s poor weather has hampered production, lowering both output and product quality.

The fruit producers’ groups have united in their call for the LG government to quickly act to restore the MIS system and shield farmers from financial hardship. For many farmers, the reintroduction of the MIS plan represents a last chance to recover from the effects of a difficult growing season. Kashmir’s apple producers are hoping that the government will intervene to save their industry and that a renewed MIS programme will do more than just ease their pain.

The horticultural industry creates 8.50 crore man-days annually.

It is not an exaggeration to call Jammu and Kashmir, and especially the Kashmir valley, the “land of fruits” and the “fruit bowl” of Northern India.

With a contribution of around 9.5% to SGDP, horticulture is a significant economic sector.

Production in the horticultural industry in J&K has skyrocketed from 10,000 metric tonnes in 1950 to an expected 25 lakh metric tonnes in 2020. It’s official: apples and walnuts may be exported from J&K.

J&K accounts for 70% of the country’s apple output and 90% of its dry fruit production.

In the temperate regions, fruit trees provide apples, pears, cherries, walnuts, almonds, chestnuts, strawberries, stone fruits, and grapes; in the subtropical regions, farmers cultivate mangoes, citrus fruits, guavas, litchis, berries, grapes, and oranges.

The majority of J&K’s primary fruit crop, apples, comes from the districts in the Kashmir region, with just a small percentage coming from the more temperate portions of the Jammu region.

Baramulla, the largest district in Kashmir, has the most apple orchards (25,231 ha) and produces the most apples (4,04,089 metric tonnes), followed by Kupwara and Shopian.

While pears, another important fresh fruit crop, are cultivated over virtually all of J&K, the temperate Kashmir area is home to the majority of the production base and hosts several excellent varieties of the crop known for their extended shelf life.



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