India’s fruit and vegetable production is on the rise, thanks to the government’s consistent technical support and policy measures.
Onion, banana and potato production is likely to go up significantly, according to Ministry of Agriculture’s first advance estimates of 2020-21 of area and production of horticultural crops.
Banana production is likely to go up from 32.5 million tonnes in 2019-20 to 33.73 million tonnes in 2020-21. This upward trend is mainly guided by an estimated increase in area under production from 8,97,000 hectares to 9,20,000 hectares.
Similarly, potato production is expected to rise to 53.11 million tonnes in 2020-21, up by 4.5 million tonnes as compared to 2019-20.
Onion production will record a slight increase with an estimated production of 26.29 million tonnes, against 26.09 million tonnes in 2019-20.
As a result, the total vegetable production is likely to touch 193.61 million tonnes in 2020-21 as against 188.91 million tonnes in 2019-20.
In fruits, the overall production is estimated to be 103.23 million tonnes in 2020-21 as compared to 102.03 million tonnes in 2019-20.
Also read: Railways diversifies freight basket, lets fruits, grains, sugar hop on
On the other hand, the production of tomato, apple and spices could see a significant decline. Tomato prices crashed during lockdown, which has discouraged farmers to go for it once again. With short supply, the prices would go up once again, thus leading to a recovery in production by the end of this year.
Dr AK Singh, deputy director general (horticulture), Indian Council of Agricultural Research, told The Print, “The sustained technological support and policy incentive has been driving the increase in vegetable and fruits production across the country.”
Today, farmers have access to high yielding varieties of crops. Besides, availability of cold storage and subsidies too resulted in increase in production of fruits and vegetables, said Dr Singh.
Additionally, fruits and vegetables command better market price when compared with grains. Thus, more and more farmers are getting attracted to fruits and vegetable cultivation.