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Fruit growers in Kashmir facing hardships

Kashmir fruit growers and traders predict losses as the apple prices in the markets outside are dropping by 60 percent. The fruit growers claim the quality of the fruit hasn’t been good this season due to ‘unfavourable conditions’, including hailstorm and less rain in major apple producing districts.

The decline in market rates has pushed many growers to store their harvest in cold storage across the valley, waiting for a better season. President of the Apple Growers Association, Mushtaq Ahmad, said: “The apple industry in Kashmir will face “a silent death” if the government does not take positive steps to save it.”

Bashir Ahmad Bashir, President of Parimpora Mandi, told The Kashmir Monitor that the demand for Kashmiri apples outside the state has also decreased. The fear is that the apple industry will face the same fate as the handicrafts or shawl industries in the valley.

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