Prices skyrocket as production takes massive hit from unseasonal rains, drastic temperature shifts
Mysore/Mysuru: The vagaries of weather have continued to impact mango yield in Karnataka for the third consecutive year and as a result, prices have gone up. Untimely rain in December and excess heat in February have adversely impacted flowering and fruit setting, said traders.
Most mango species begin flowering around October-November, which usually trickle into markets by February-March. The second and third flowering occur around November-December and December-January, respectively. Usually, by March, mango trees appear bountifully laden with the fruit. This year, however, there was barely any sign of even flowering by mid-March.
Last December, the winter chill set late in many parts of mango-producing States of Karnataka and Maharashtra with most November and December days being warm. In addition, a delayed monsoon retreat — marked by heavy showers — continuously disturbed the flowering and fruiting stages, causing a severe blow to production.
Senior officials in the Horticulture Department and the Karnataka State Mango Development and Marketing Corporation Limited (KSMDMCL) have said that Karnataka might get only 70 percent of mango yield this season. Untimely showers also lead to the proliferation of many fungal diseases and infections, such as anthracnose infections, blossom blight and powdery mildew, said officials.
In South Karnataka, Ramanagara, Kolar, Chikkaballapur and Bengaluru Rural account for most mango production. While Ramanagara is the second-highest mango-cultivating district after Kolar, Kolar accounts for 50 percent of mango cultivation in Karnataka. According to traders, in Ramanagara, the flowers withered due to untimely rain and blight disease.
This year, Horticulture officers say that Karnataka might produce about 5-6 lakh tonnes of mangoes. In 2021, Karnataka had produced around 15 lakh tonnes and in 2022, the State produced 8-9 lakh tonnes.
Though the King of Fruits has hit the markets in Mysuru, it is expensive and burning a hole in the pocket. As of now, Badami, Sendhoora are available but are pricey. “We have received less stocks this time and naturally, the demand is high so are the prices. But we are not finding bulk buyers this time, may be due to gloomy weather and unseasonal rains,” fruit merchant Yasin told Star of Mysore.
Overwhelming response for mela last year
The three-day mango mela held last year from May 27 to May 29 at Kuppanna Park in city, received an overwhelming response from the public, which prompted the authorities to extend the mela by a day.
Around 12 tonnes of mangoes, belonging to different varieties, were sold on the first day itself and during the four-day mela, around 74 tonnes were sold.
TWO-YEAR PRICE DATA
Variety2022 (prices per kg)2023 (prices per kg)BadamiRs. 80Rs. 160AlphonsoRs. 160Rs. 220RaspuriRs. 50 to Rs. 60Rs. 120 to Rs. 140MalagovaRs. 80Rs. 180 to Rs. 200SendhooraRs. 80Rs. 180
Mango Mela from May 19?
We have got many requests from growers to organise Mango Mela like every year. It is delayed this year as elections are round the corner. We will plan after the poll process is complete and will call a meeting on May 11. We have plans to organise the Mela from May 19. —K. Rudresh, Assistant Director, Horticulture Department
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