APEDA Facilitates Export of Indian Bananas to Russia via Sea

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GG News Bureau
New Delhi, 19th Feb.
 In a significant stride towards boosting agricultural exports, the Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA), operating under the Ministry of Commerce and Industry, orchestrated the export of bananas from India to Russia via sea.

The endeavor was realized through the collaboration with M/s. Gurukrupa Corporation Pvt. Ltd., a Mumbai-based exporter of fruits and vegetables with a strong track record in exporting fresh produce to the EU and the Middle East.

On February 17, 2024, a consignment comprising 20 metric tons (1540 boxes) of bananas was ceremoniously flagged off from Maharashtra by the Chairman of APEDA, Shri Abhishek Dev. This collaborative effort was made possible in partnership with the Central Institute of Sub-tropical Horticulture (CISH), which developed a specialized sea protocol aimed at maintaining the quality of fruits during transit.

Chairman APEDA, Shri Abhishek Dev, expressed encouragement for more exporters to explore innovative methods for shipping products to new destinations, with APEDA committed to supporting and facilitating such initiatives. He underscored APEDA’s financial assistance scheme, now placing special emphasis on supporting women entrepreneurs. He commended the pivotal role of CISH in the development of sea protocols and congratulated all stakeholders involved for the successful flag-off.

Recent developments indicate Russia’s growing interest in procuring tropical fruits from India, with bananas emerging as a significant agricultural import. Traditionally sourced from Ecuador in Latin America, Indian bananas now present a viable alternative for the Russian market.

Indian bananas find demand across various global destinations, including Iran, Iraq, UAE, Oman, Uzbekistan, Saudi Arabia, Nepal, Qatar, Kuwait, Bahrain, Afghanistan, and the Maldives. Furthermore, countries like the USA, Russia, Japan, Germany, China, the Netherlands, the UK, and France offer lucrative export opportunities for Indian produce.

The consignment, spearheaded by M/s. Gurukrupa Corporation Pvt. Ltd., a prominent women-led exporter registered with APEDA, sourced bananas directly from farmers in Andhra Pradesh. Following harvesting, the bananas underwent grading, sorting, packing, boxing, and container stuffing at an APEDA-approved packhouse in Maharashtra. Subsequently, the container embarked on its journey from JNPT to the Novorossiysk port in Russia, with the final destination being Moscow.

Banana cultivation is a cornerstone of horticultural production in India, with Andhra Pradesh leading the pack followed by Maharashtra, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, and Uttar Pradesh. Collectively, these states account for approximately 67 percent of India’s banana production.

Despite being the global leader in banana production, India’s export share in the global market stands at a mere 1%, despite producing 26.45 percent of the world’s bananas. In the fiscal year 2022-23, India exported bananas worth USD 176 million, equivalent to 0.36 MMT.

With ambitious targets set, India aims to achieve banana exports worth 1 billion USD within the next five years. This milestone is expected to significantly enhance farmers’ income, benefitting over 25,000 farmers, and generate employment for more than 50,000 individuals directly or indirectly linked to the supply chain.The surge in agricultural and processed food product exports is attributed to various initiatives by APEDA, including B2B exhibitions, market exploration campaigns, and the promotion of natural, organic, and Geographical Indication (GI) tagged agro-products.

APEDA remains committed to promoting exports of fresh fruits and vegetables, with a steadfast focus on developing sea protocols to sustain the quality and attributes of perishable produce during transit, thus ensuring India’s continued presence in global agricultural markets.

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