Ramanagara: One of the long-standing demands of the mango growers of the District, the mango grading unit will soon be operational at the Channapatna Agricultural Produce Market soon.
The unit is being set up by the District Mango and Coconut Farmers Producers’ Organisation in collaboration with the Mango Development Board. The unit, which will come up at a cost of Rs. 1.5 Crore, has the capacity to sort mangoes into different types based on their size and colour. This unit has the capacity to sort the marketed mangoes into four sizes 150 gm, 200 gm, 250 gm etc. based on their weight. Not only that, but also based on the colour of the mango, how ripe it is. These machines will have the ability to measure and classify the product based on that. This project is being implemented for the first time in Channapatna APMC as a pilot project.
In recent years, the retention of mangoes has been declining frequently. Due to unscientific practices followed by growers during harvesting, the value of the produce is also decreasing. Now if the product is classified and sold according to its quality, the farmers will get a higher price, says the farmer leader of the District C. Puttaswamy.
70% of the total mango grown in Ramanagara District is of Alphonso variety. This fruit, which is the tastiest variety among mangoes, has many specialties and is of export quality. There is a demand for it globally. As the fruit is sorted and sold in the market, it will fetch a better price and the export opportunity will also increase. Farmers are of the opinion that it will be possible to attract traders from the State and outside the State.
This classification technology is in use in some parts of the country. This grading process is mostly done on the basis of fruit size. Also, the black coloured pods are removed in this process. From this, the product can be divided into A, B and C grade, says Horticulture Department Deputy Director Munegowda.
“There is a calculation that the minimum and maximum weight of this type of fruit should be the same for export. Nuts weighing more than 220 grams are considered grade A in Badami variety mangoes. This will be possible through the classification process. According to this, farmers will be benefited if the price is according to the grading in the market,” he says.
Different types of fruits including mango, guava and chikkoo can be classified by this. We are using such a machine for the first time in the State,” says Chikkabaire Gowda, Managing Director, District Mango and Coconut Farmers Producers’ Association. The Mango Board is providing the necessary machinery for this system. We manage it. Farmers will get service at very low cost. At present, it will be functioning in Channapatnam APMC, and there is a plan to shift it there after the mango processing unit in Byrapatna comes up’, he informed.
Among the mango growing districts in the State, Ramanagara has the second place and this product is grown in an area of more than 70 thousand acres. Annual average production ranges from 1.5 lakh tonnes to 2 lakh tonnes. On the one hand, the State Government has completed the tender process for starting a mango processing plant at Byrapatna in Channapatnam Taluk. On the other hand, farmers’ leaders say that the establishment of this unit in Channapatna will be a boon to the mango growers of this area.