In a landmark decision at benefitting the apple growers, the State Government has significantly enhanced the minimum support price under the Market Intervention Scheme (MIS) from Rs. 10.50 to Rs. 12 per kg. It is the first time in history that the State Government has hiked the price of Rs.1.50 in one go. Besides apple, the minimum support price for the purchase of mango, kinnow, malta and orange under MIS has also been increased by raising it from Rs. 10.50 to Rs. 12 per kg. For the first time lemon will also be procured under MIS at par with galgal i.e. Rs. 10 per kg.
Chief Minister Thakur Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu said, “Under MIS 1,43,778 metric tonnes apple are set to be procured and to facilitate large scale procurement, 312 procurement centres will be established as per demand of the fruit growers. Of these, 210 collection centres will be operated by HPMC and the rest 102 by the HIMFED. This decision of the State Government will provide additional benefit approximately Rs. 24 crore to the apple growers.”
The State Government has abolished the distinction among seedling, grafted and kacha aachari mango for procurement purposes to facilitate the farmers. Earlier there was a provision to procure the different varieties of mango at different rates but the present State Government has decided to make the procurement rate uniform for all three varieties of mango and it will be procured at the rate of Rs. 12 per kg.
The State Government has also decided to bring the procurement rate of kinnow, malta and orange at the same rate with apple and mango. Now, these citrus fruits will also be purchased at Rs. 12 per kg equivalent to apple and mango. In order to facilitate the farmers, the State Government has decided to eliminate the grade system for procuring kinnow, malta and orange. During the year 2023-24, galgal and lemon will also be procured at the rate of Rs. 10 per kg.
“The MIS is safeguarding the fruit growers from the exploitation of middlemen and the priority of the present State Government was to strengthen the local economy of the farmers of the State by introducing various pro farmers’ initiatives,” said Sh. Sukhu. The State Government was also providing subsidy on insecticides, pesticides, fungicides, to further support the farmers in the State, he added. The State Government is working diligently to reshape the landscape of fruit farming in the State, ensuring fair compensation for farmers and bolstering the agricultural sector’s growth, stated the Chief Minister.