HYDERABAD: There’s no denying mango is the flavour of the summer. The king of fruits, with its vibrant colours and juicy interiors, is almost everybody’s favourite. However, it would seem that this year might be less than fortunate for the delicious fruit. High temperatures have taken a serious toll on the mango yields in the State. Although the area under mango cultivation in Telangana has remained almost the same as last year, the production is, in fact, expected to decline drastically this year.
When contacted, Deputy Director of Telangana Horticulture Department MV Madhusudhan told Express, “Mango trees bear two kinds of flowers: male flowers and hermaphrodite flowers. Hermaphrodite flowers constitute only about two per cent of all the flowers. Also, only about 0.5 per cent of these hermaphrodite flowers turn into fruits. The process is very sensitive to climatic conditions. Too much difference between the night and day temperatures interferes with the flowering process. This is the primary reason for high decline in production this year.”
The flowering usually takes place from the end of January to March. It may be mentioned here that the temperatures had started rising drastically in February this year, and many parts of the State had recorded maximum temperatures that were 2-4 degree Celsius above normal. Express visited Gaddiannaram market in Hyderabad on Saturday, where the mango trade and the hustle-bustle around it seemed to take place as usual. However, it was marked with a skepticism regarding the remaining season.
The usual practice is that the mango traders get in touch with farmers even before the trees bear flowers, and pay a lumpsum amount to them depending on various parameters. Once the trees bear fruit, the trader transports mangoes to the fruit market, from where it is further sold to dealers within or outside the State.
One such trader N Gnaneshwar said, “I had booked some mango farms in Siddipet and paid advance money there. I was expecting around 14 tonnes of mangoes, but I received only two tonnes.”