Nashik: For the first time of this grapes season, first container of 12,480 metric tonnes of fresh grapes has been transported to Germany from Nashik which is known as the major hub of grapes production.
Under Mission Begin Again, farmers are now preparing for the season with a fresh impetus. Farmers in the district are ready to take up many issues besides the pandemic, like weather conditions, market scenario, export and the current economic situation once again with renewed vigour. Maharashtra is the Numero Uno grape grower in the country.
Not only is it a leader in grape production but it also needs to strive to find new markets, new customers in terms of sales. Indian agricultural products are in high demand in Bangladesh. To this end, the central government should pay special attention to grape exports to Bangladesh and reduce transportation costs and duties.
Kailash Bhosale, president of the Grape Growers' Association, said that if the central government provided railways for grape exports to Dhaka, the capital of Bangladesh, a large quantity of grapes would be exported to the neighbouring Bangladesh and the country could earn good foreign exchange.
Grapes are a major source of foreign exchange for the country. In the 2018-19 season, 2.46 lakh metric tons of grapes were exported. Through this, the country received more than Rs 2335 crore in foreign exchange.
When exporting agricultural products, there are some criteria based on the size of each country's vines, weight of the vine, sugar content and most importantly the proportion of pesticides. Strictly adhering to these criteria, Indian grapes have made a brand name for itself in international markets.
Favourable weather this year will boost the production of export quality grapes. The grape season has started from January. At present, more than 45,000 grape growers have registered for export.
Indian grapes compete with Chile
Chile has been challenging the multi-year monopoly of high quality Indian grapes in the export sector for the past few years. Last year, Chilean grapes performed well in the global markets. This had an impact on Indian grape exports. There are 30 to 35 varieties of grapes in Chile. However, as Indian grapes are tasty and in higher demand in foreign markets, Indian grapes will now have to compete with Chilean grapes.