Published:  04:15 AM, 11 May 2021

Mango hits the market

Mango hits the market
Summer has arrived and so have mangoes. Fruit markets in Dhaka have received the first batch of mangoes, mostly some indigenous varieties, this summer. However, most consumers are unhappy about the high prices of the newly arrived mangoes.

The Gopalbhog and Khirshapati varieties are yet to hit the market properly. Consumers have to wait for them some more days. Mangoes will be available in abundance by the middle of June as all varieties of the fruit will hit the markets by that time.  The current season's mango harvesting has started in Satkhira in line with the directives given by the district administration.The farmers started plucking Gopalbhog and Gobindobhog mangoes from May 2. Most of these mangoes are being sent to Dhaka and other big cities amid restriction on movement due to the Covid-19 outbreak. Moreover, farmers will begin harvesting the popular Himsagar mangoes on May 21, and Langra and Amrapali varieties on June 1 and June 4 respectively.However, many orchard owners have harvested immature mangoes before the stipulated time to gain more profit as the sweet mangoes are highly desirable to many people in Dhaka during the month of Ramadan. Last week several fraud traders were held in Dhaka for selling immature mangoes ripened artificially with chemicals that are harmful to the human body.

The mangoes from Rajshahi region will be harvested a week after Eid. According to the local agriculture office, mango has been cultivated in more than 5,000 orchards in Satkhira this season with a production target of 40,000 tons. At Satkhira's Sultanpur Barabazar wholesale market, Gopalbhog is sold at Tk1,800-2,400 per maund and Gobindobhog at Tk2,600-2,800 per maund. Due to restriction on movement, traders from Dhaka cannot come to Satkhira easily like they did last year. So the wholesalers and the orchard owners are sending mangoes on truck or using courier service.

Satkhira Deputy Commissioner SM Mostafa Kamal said that the district administration would remain active against harvesting and marketing of immature mangoes. "The law enforcement agencies and the upazila administration have already been given instructions to this end," he added.

SM Abdul Kader said: "The dates for mango harvesting have been fixed to ensure formalin-free fruits." Torikul Islam, a mango orchard owner from Charghat upazila in Rajshahi, said: "The trees are in full blossom this year because of pre-monsoon showers. We expect a selling and buying binge throughout the district." According to the Rajshahi Fruit Research Centre, mango has been cultivated on 17,463 hectares in the district this year. The target cultivation has been set at 2,426,189 metric tonnes.

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