VIJAYAWADA: Every year, the Nunna Mango Market (NMM) — one of the biggest mango markets in the country — witnesses the arrival of large quantities of mangoes from the farms by April 1. But this year, the mangoes are yet to arrive in large quantities and mango-growers are yet to make their presence felt at the market though it is already 10 days past the normal arrival date.
Market authorities said it might take another 10 days for the farmers to arrive at the market in respectable numbers and participate in the market transactions. Last year, the NMM saw Rs 62 cr business turnover, with the turnover in the first week of April being between Rs 10 lakh and Rs 20 lakh. But, for the same period this year, the business transactions have been only around Rs 2 lakh.
The absence of farmers and traders in the market on the levels normally expected is attributed to the due to 50 per cent fall in the production of mangoes this year. “What we hear from the farmers is that the yield is less and even the size of the mango in several farms has been less than expected. By this time, we used to see 400 tractors of mango loads on an average every day at the market, but this time it has been only 70 tractors on an average,” N Srinivas Rao of NMM said.
He said that since the peak marketing period was May, they expected the business transaction to pick up only by then. Mango brought to the NMM from Tiruvur, Mylavaram, Vissannapeta and Nuziveedu mandals of Krishna district and some areas in West Godavari are bought by traders from Gujarat, Rajasthan and Maharashtra. Around 70 per cent is exported to these markets and another 20 per cent is transported to Guntur and other districts and the remaining 10 per cent is left for local consumption.
According to Horticulture Department officials, the drop in the mango yield has been due to two factors - dew and pests. “Three different types of pests, including soot mold, had infested the crops this time, which had resulted in the drop in the fruit yield. The first flowering had also not yielded the fruit and the dew factor had also played an important role in the drop in the fruit production,” Horticulture Department Assistant Director Sujatha told Express.
The cropping area of the mango in the district is 64,000 hectares and the mango production, which is normally 8 tonnes per hectare on an average fell by 50 per cent this year. Deficit rainfall during the last year’s monsoon was also an important factor for the drop in the mango yield,” said S Venkateswara Rao, secretary of Krishna District Mango-Growers Association.
He said that the drop in the yield seemed most pronounced in Banginapalle in Kurnool district. “‘Chinna Rasalu’ mango production is normal and we are hopeful that the second flowering will yield some good fruits. However, the quantum of the business is set to come down by around 40 per cent at NMM and the situation is more or less same in other markets, including Chittoor.