Jujube yield in Farah up, price doubles this year
FARAH CITY (PAN): The jujube yield has increased this yearin western Farah province, where the drupaceous fruit price has doubled, an official and growers said on Monday.
A total 1,050 hectares of land were brought under jujube cultivation, producing 1,470 tonnes of the fruit in 2014 and 1,187 tonnes this year, the extension manager at the agriculture department said.
Shah Mohammad told Pajhwok Afghan News the quality of the fruit had also improved. As a result demand for it has gone up in the domestic market, as well as in Pakistan and India.
India, using jujube in medicine manufacture, had asked for the organic production of the fruit and avoiding sprayingthe plants with pesticides or fungicides, he said.
India had also cautioned against the use of chemical fertilisers in growing the fruit, with Afghan farmers meeting the demand.
The price of one kilogram of jujube this year hovered between 80 and 160 afghanis, compared to last year’s rates of 56-80 afs in the local market, the official added.
A jujube orchard needs less agricultural labour and less water, yielding higher income, according to Mohammad, who said farmers were increasingly growing the fruit in Farah.
New jujube orchards on 230 hectares of land were established in Pushtkoh, Shebkoh, Pushtrod, Khak-i-Safid and the provincial capital Farah City this year, he continued.
A grower from Raj village on the outskirts of Farah City,Abdul Malik, said his two-hectare orchard had produced one tonne of jujube. Last year, the same orchard had yielded 850 kilograms of the fruit.
“Jujube cultivation is better because it needs low input costs, but has a higher income,” he said, adding: “I store the fruit for the next season, when its prices double.”
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