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0.2 million tons kinnows may be exported in 2007-08

KARACHI (August 16 2007): Pakistan may export 0.2 million tons kinnows in 2007-08--almost double from 0.1 million tons exported in 2006-07--in case of a good crop, sources told Business Recorder on Wednesday. `This season, we have reports of good crop of kinnow and, God willing, we expect that our exports would touch 0.2 million tons figure,` they said.

In 2006-07, torrential rains hit hard the kinnow crop leaving the juicy citrus with blemishes on its skin. `Due to these blemishes we could not get good price and markets for kinnows and the exports restricted to 0.1 million tons`, sources said, adding that `though there have been heavy rains this year too they have not affected the kinnow crop and that is why we hope for double export target.` Kinnow season starts in mid-October and lasts till mid-April, while exports would start some time by mid-December.

Sources said that PHDEB is working on proposals to improve and maintain the quality of the fruit. These proposals include enforcement of quality and grading standards, pre-shipment inspection and some incentives like subsidies on airfreights etc for those exporters who would voluntarily present their goods for inspection.

Training programmes would also be organised for the growers, processors and exporters by holding various seminars and workshops and creating awareness among the stakeholders on the EurapGap and HACCP (hazardous analysis for critical control point) and motivating them to implement these standards. Major markets for kinnows are Middle Eastern countries, Iran, Eastern Europe, Russia and Ukraine.

People of Indonesia and Malaysia also entertain great demand for Pakistani kinnows. It is worth mentioning here that an eight-member Pakistani delegation has gone to Russia on August 13 to allay the concerns of importers in Moscow on Pakistan`s agricultural commodities.

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