PROSPECTS OF APPLE EXPORTS
The present trade policy has been formulated with the over all framework of the Chief Executive of Pakistan to achieve economic development
By S . Asif Ali Bokhari,
Director Export Promotion Bureau,
Nov 20 - 26, 2000
Apple is an important fruit of temperate climate and is very popular fruit of the world. It was cultivated in Greece as early as 600 BC or earlier. During the time a number of wild varieties were known. Those varieties were perhaps spread by animals into Europe before much cultivation was practiced.
In Pakistan, Apples have been grown as Commercial Fruit Plants in Balochistan and N.W.F.P., since a long time ago. Because of its attractive income apple plantation was taken up by the growers in Swat, Dir, Mansehra, Para Chinar, Chitral, Hunza, North and South Waziristan Agencies.
District Swat covers an area of approximately 4000 square miles within the Malakand Division. The area is mainly a river valley surrounded by mountains, which also have fertile valleys feedings into the main Swat Plain. District Swat is the most important of all the apple producing districts of N.W.F.P. Next in importance comes the districts of Mansehra, Dir, Abbottabad, Chitral and Hunza
Total area of apples under cultivation
The above table shows that there is steady increase in the area being cultivated for apples in Balochistan and N.W.F.P. only, while in the remaining two provinces i.e. Punjab and Sindh its cultivation is almost stagnant.
Pakistan produces about 600,000 metric tonnes of apples during 1998-99 (estimated figures) and share of N.W.F.P. is about 25% of the total produce.
Production of apples in Pakistan
Major Producer Countries of Apples
Quantity (M. Tonnes)
Belgium - Luxembourg
The above table shows total world Production of apples which is 25,527,346 M. Tons. China rack first, U.S.A. second, France third, Turkey forth, Germany fifth, Italy Seventh, Iran eight and so on. Pakistan's share in the world production is almost negligible.
Major Exporters of Apples
Qty. (M. Tonnes)
The total world export of apples is 2,364,340 (000$). In apple export France is No.l, U.S.A. is No.2, Italy is No.3, Chile is No.4, Netherlands is No.5, Newzealand is No.6 and so on and so forth.
Export Promotion Bureau has been making concerted efforts to promote the export of non-traditional items, with the objective to diversify the country's exports. Accordingly Export Promotion Bureau started organizing an apple show at Quetta since 1994. These shows have generated lot of interest among the growers and exporters of apples, the exports of apples has picked up from almost zero in 1994 - 95 to about 6000 metric tonnes during 1999-2000.
Emulating the success of Apples Show at Quetta, Export Promotion Bureau decided to hold an Apple Show at Peshawar from 21st to 23rd September, 1999 to generate the awareness and interest among the apple growers. This year also Apple Show was held at Peshawar from 21 - 23 September, 2000.
The Show's aim was to bring together progressive apple growers, horticulturists, active exporters and foreign buyers with a view to introduce apples of N.W.F.P., besides identifying measures for boosting export of apples specifically from N.W.F.P. Various varieties of apples which are being grown in this province displayed during the show namely; Top Red, Red Spur, Kala Kulu, Super Gold, Red Chief, Apple Elite, Stark Crimson, Oregon Spur, Red Rom Beauty, Royal Gala, Spartan and Double Red etc.
The objective of the present government is to revive the economy to reduce inflation and provide job opportunities through development and expansion of industrial mining and the agricultural sector. All these measures have to be taken keeping in view the technological advances and to meet the requirements of the world market for our products.
The present trade policy has been formulated with the over all framework of the Chief Executive of Pakistan to achieve economic development.
The government wanted to strengthen the export base and to move towards higher value added exports. For this the government has given lot of incentives to the agriculture sectors, due to which there is 4.3% increase in the production of agriculture sector, especially in fruits and vegetables.
Export of Fresh Apples
Quantity in '000' KG.
Value in '000' Dollars
The above table shows that our total export of Fresh Apples during 1999-2000 is of the value of US$1.3 million as compared to US$1.2 million during 1998-99. Thus showing an increase of 8.3%.
To the perishable cargo, special one window handling facilities in the initial stage at Karachi and Multan airports will be provided. Government is also considering to provide air cargo facilities for the export of perishable items, especially apples, mangoes, dates at Quetta, Multan and Peshawar airport.
In order to exploit the export potential of N.W.F.P. and to acquaint the people of this region with the export trend Export Promotion Bureau has been regularly organizing seminars in N.W.F.P. to disseminate basic information of modern concept of international trade and guide the businessmen to enter into the export market.
Strategies for developing fresh produce exports
If we really wanted to increase the export of fresh fruits, the following problems and their remedial measures are suggested.
i) Produce quality needs to be improved at producer level by:
– Improvement in varieties and plants.
– Improvement in irrigation techniques.
– Improvement in farmer product knowledge.
– Improvement in government advice systems.
– Controls on the usage of fertilizers and sprays.
ii) Product presentation needs to be improved by:
– Better care at harvesting.
– Grading facilities.
– Washing and waxing facilities.
– Cooling (field heat pull down, transportation storage).
– Packing on or near production site.
– Better packing materials and boxes.
– Better table and box printing.
– Palletizing and netting for stability.
– Educating staff in produce handling techniques.
iii) Transport improvements are required in terms of:
– Internal systems (road, rail) including reefer trucks.
– Better utilization of available air freight space.
– Better airport storage and handling.
– Increase in exports by reefer sea freight.
iv) Exporters must accept:
– Investment in packing and cooling facilities as well as grading and labour training.
– Procurement direct at production source and not through wholesale markets.
– Contractual supply arrangements in order to provide incentives for improved production.
– Need to cooperate with each other and with the Government.
— Need to develop internal quality control systems