Banganapalle blues: 50% drop in production, mango gets dearer

By Times Of India on 08 Apr 2018 | read
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HYDERABAD: Relishing that Banganapalle on a sweltering summer afternoon, is likely to become a luxury for Hyderabadis this year. Reason: sporadic rains and hailstorm that has severely damaged the mango crop across districts of Telangana. With horticulture officials predicting a sharp 50% drop in supplies owing to “unfavourable weather”, the cost of the otherwise modest Banganapalle, they fear, might see a manifold rise in price in the open market.

Already, the local favourite, usually available for Rs100-120 a kg is being sold for a staggering Rs180 per kg in several retail stores. Same is the case with the other variants: Totapuri and Peddarasalu. Usually priced at Rs40-50 kg, these are being sold at Rs85 andRs140 per kg respectively.

Chances are, they might get dearer over the next few weeks, said officials.

“Last year, the total mango production in Telangana was 8.25 lakh metric tonne. This year, we don’t expect it to be more than 3-4 lakh metric tonne,” said Venkat Ram Reddy, commissioner of horticulture department adding how the intermittent showers adversely affected crops of over 12,300 acres in Mahbubnagar, Nizamabad, Rangareddy and Nalgonda.

The thin supply has left retail stores in the city reeling under a shortage of stock, which they receive only once in two-three days. “Earlier this week, we received five kgs of Baganapalli which was exhausted within two days. And now, we are not getting any stock from the wholesale market. We are hopeful that by next week we may receive some fresh stock,” said Neelaveni, a salesperson at Ratnadeep super market, Road no 7, Banjara Hills.

The situation is equally dismal at Rhythu Bazaars. While mangoes are still elusive to the consumers due to low production, fruit vendors at the market are keeping their fingers crossed. “Until last year, arrival of mangoes was in abundance by first week of March in Hyderabad. But due to scarcity of mangoes in the wholesale market, we have to wait for two-three days to get new stock. We are hoping that the situation will be better by April-end,” said Murali, a fruit vendor at Lingampally Rhythu Bazaar.

The comparatively higher prices has not, however, not deterred all consumers from spurling on the summer treat. “It is only during this period that I get to use mangoes to bake cakes and puddings. Therefore, I don’t mind spending a little more to relish the fruit which is not available throughout the year,” said Shilpi MV, a consumer.