Built over nearly 30 kanals of land, Shopian fruit market has emerged as a change agent and emancipator for the farmers and fruit growers of south Kashmir.
Though change in weather and incessant rains from April 2014 onwards had its impact but the records suggest that exports from Shopian mandi are up and kicking both in volume and worth.
According to figures revealed by government, in year 2014-2015, 53345 MT of apple dispatched in 3746200 boxes were exported from the mandi generating total turnover of Rs 177 Cr, an increase of around Rs 32 Cr as compared to last year when the turnover was Rs 145.36 Cr. As per the quantity in 2013-2014, 49452 MT were exported in 3159200 boxes.
The mandi which is now address for fruit growers in South Kashmir has to many extent made growers self reliant. “With the establishment of a market close to home, we are the masters of our own crop which wasn’t the case earlier,” an apple grower Ghulam Nabi told Kashmir Life.
Pertinently, every year, unsold apples are sent to Lassipora cold storage at the end of the apple selling season which ensures the availability of apples in off-seasons as well.