The first trial shipment of fresh vegetables was flagged off on Friday from India's northern city of Varanasi via sea route to Dubai. The shipment contained 14 metric tonnes of fresh vegetables, said an official statement issued by the Ministry of Commerce and Industry.
The fresh vegetables were sourced from three 'Farmer Producer Organisations (FPOs)' of Ghazipur and Varanasi districts in northern state of Uttar Pradesh.
This is a part of the endeavour by the "Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA)" to promote exports from agriculture produce rich regions of India to international markets.
APEDA is an organization under the country's Ministry of Commerce and Industry, which is responsible for promoting exports of agriculture and processed food products.
In order to promote the FPOs' yields, an 'Agri Export Hub' was set up in Varanasi. Similar Hubs are being set up in four other districts of Uttar Pradesh.
According to the official statement, in its efforts for setting up of "Agri Export Hub", the APEDA organized an 'Export Promotion Programme' and 'Buyer Seller Meet (BSM)' for fresh vegetables this year in Varanasi which was attended by 100 farmers of the region and exporters from major cities, including Mumbai, Kolkata, and Hyderabad, besides many cities of Uttar Pradesh.
The BSM provided a platform to link the FPOs and progressive farmers to prominent exporters. The interaction between exporters and farmers of the region was very helpful in terms of understanding the potential of the region, quality of vegetables and fruits produced, infrastructure required and convincing the farmers in cultivating export oriented variety of crops and discussing the concerns of both the stakeholders.
Exporters showed their keen interest in exporting vegetables and fruits of the region provided quality of produce is ensured. The BSM was followed by field visits to production sites.