Pakistani mangoes export increased by 20 percent last year, with expectations that it would be more this year amid institutional hiccups.
The ‘King of Fruits’ also landed in the USA with demand exceeding supply among Pakistanis and other South Asians in America who love the fruit.
Pakistani mango export to the US stands at just 30 tons each year.
Traders have lamented that even after 10 years since the US approved a zero-rated facility under the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP), Pakistani mango exporters have failed to grab a modest slice of the American market.
Last year, the US imported mangoes worth $719 million but mango export from Pakistan stood below $90 million.
“…it has not been able to penetrate non-ethnic markets and supermarkets of North America and Europe that are potentially best export points and can fetch significant foreign exchange,” Sindh Abadgar Board (SAB) Senior Vice President Mahmood Nawaz Shah told Express Tribune.
Government institutions were not working efficiently to promote export, Shah added.
Exporters point finger at the absence of a modern irradiation facility to help sea export instead of costly air shipment –it was planned to be established by the Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission in Lahore, the Pakistan Horticulture Development and Export Company (PHDEC), which was leading the initiative, is virtually dormant.
Each kg of mangoes presently cost around $8 to reach the US market. “That’s a lot”, a market expert tells DesPardes.
India has an irradiation facility. It is able to export mangoes to the US even through the sea route.