Punjab plans to export 20,000 tonnes of kinnow

Chandigarh, Aug 17 (PTI) Punjab Chief Minister ParkashSingh Badal today gave nod to the proposal of state-ownedPunjab Agro Corporation to export 20,000 tonnes of kinnow – atype of citrus fruit – in the coming season. An official spokesperson said a decision to this effectwas taken by the Chief Minister after successful exportingaround 5,000 tonnes of kinnow to Russia, Ukraine and theMiddle East last year. The Chief Minister has asked Managing Director (MD)Punjab Agro K S Pannu to take all possible measures to set upsufficient cold chain infrastructure in Punjab in next fourmonths for ensuring long distance marketing of kinnow indomestic and international market. This move was likely to immensely benefit the kinnowgrowers of the state, he said. With a view to improve the farm practices of kinnowharvesting in line with international standards, the ChiefMinister has also approved the proposal to import citrus fruitclippers and harvesting bags, besides providing specializedtraining to labour engaged in fruit picking in orchards. Badal has also sanctioned a financial grant worth Rs 10crore to Punjab Agro for immediate improvement of cold chaininfrastructure for kinnow marketing. International Standard post harvest fungicide laden waxwould also be imported in the state to ensure long storagelife of kinnow, he informed. In order to take kinnow to distant marketing centres,the Railway Ministry has been requested to providerefrigerated wagons from Abohar, Bathinda and Hoshiarpurrailway stations, thereby covering the Kinnow hubs of thestate. It has also been decided to ensure participation ofprogressive kinnow growers in international fruit trade fairsespecially one of the biggest trade fair in Russia. A coordination committee under the chairmanship ofPannu has been constituted for ensuring the implementation ofdecisions. PTI CHSMKJ

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