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Punjab okays export of 20,000 tonnes of Kinnow fruit 

Chandigarh, Aug 17 (IANS) The Punjab government has given its nod for the export of 20,000 metric tonnes of Kinnow, a citrus variety, from the state.

“The move follows the successful venture to export around 5,000 MT of Kinnow to Russia, Ukraine and Middle East last year,” a spokesman from the chief minister’s office said here on Wednesday.

Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal gave the go ahead to a proposal of Punjab Agro Corporation to export Kinnows to other countries in the coming season.

The Chief Minister has directed Punjab Agro Managing Director K.S. Pannu to take measures to set up a sufficient cold chain infrastructure in Punjab in the next four months for ensuring long distance marketing of Kinnow in the domestic and international markets.

“This is likely to immensely benefit the Kinnow growers of the state,” the spokesman said.

To improve farm practices of Kinnow harvesting in line with international standards, the Chief Minister has also approved the proposal to import citrus fruit clippers and harvesting bags, besides providing specialised training to labour engaged in fruit picking in orchards.

Badal also sanctioned a financial grant of Rs 10 crore to Punjab Agro for immediate improvement of the cold chain infrastructure for Kinnow marketing.

“International standard post harvest fungicide laden wax would also be imported in the state to ensure long storage life of Kinnow,” the spokesman said.

“In order to take Kinnow to distant marketing centres, the railways ministry has been requested to provide refrigerated wagons from Abohar, Bathinda and Hoshiarpur railway stations, thereby covering the Kinnow hubs of the state,” the spokesman said.

It has also been decided to ensure participation of progressive Kinnow growers in international fruit trade fairs, especially one of the biggest trade fairs in Russia, he added.

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