Farmers had been advocating for a 100 percent duty on imported apples to protect local interests.
The reduced profitability is hitting hard for these growers who are already dealing with rising input costs and low selling prices. They are also facing an excess of lower quality fruit, which could be sold for juice, but this potential revenue stream is currently not possible due to bureaucratic inactivity.
Kashmir’s horticulture industry, spread over 187 thousand acres of land, provides employment to over three million people and contributes significantly to the region’s economy. Kashmir produces over 73 percent of India’s total apple output.