Farmers and agriculture officials of southern Ghazni province said that the fruit production has been increased this year but there was not marketing for the produce.
An orchard owner in the Khwaja Omari district, Ali Husain, told Pajhwok Afghan News that his apple production has been increased by many folds, but there are no cold storage facilities in the province for storing their production.
“I have two orchards which have produced nearly 10.5 tonnes apple, but no trader has so far came to purchase the produce,” he said.
There are plums, cherries, quince, apricots and apple orchards in the area, but there is no storage facility for the farmers, he said.
Similarly, another orchard owner from Andar district, Ahmad Lodin, said the production of fruits have been increased, there is no market for them. “I have grapes orchards, but the traders don’t come to the district due to the bad security,” he said.
Taliban, local militias and other groups have been taking money from the traders, so the traders are not willing to come to the district, he said.
Another orchard owner in the Deh Yak district, Dildar Khan, also complained from lack of market for the fruits, asking the government to urgently establish cold storages to facilitate for the farmers to store their produce there.
The director of agriculture, irrigation and livestock department, Sultan Husain Abasyar, confirmed the high yield and lack of market for the fruits, saying there is no cold storage facility for the farmers to keep their products there and supply to market on the basis of demand.
“As we don’t have electricity in Ghazni, we can’t establish cold storages here,” he said while suggested the establishment of marketing union to find market for the production.
“We are trying to establish a union and its chairman can sign agreement with international companies for the marketing purposes of the fruits,” he said.