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Parwan vegetable growers say bear losses this year

Parwan vegetable growers say bear losses this year

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On
Sep 02, 2017 - 12:50

CHARIKARinfo-icon (Pajhwok): Vegetable prices went down by 43 percent in central Parwan province compared to last year after Pakistaninfo-icon barred the import of vegetables, causing heavy financial losses to farmers.

Habibullah, a farmer in Nasrullah Khel village of Said Khel district, told Pajhwok Afghan News vegetables had no good market in this year because Pakistan was not allowing these products to be exported to the neighboring country.

An official, who wanted not to be named, confirmed Pakistan was not allowing vegetables to be transferred from Afghanistaninfo-icon there.

Habibullah said he cultivated tomatoes, eggplant, pepper and okras on two acres of his land. He sold more than 3500 kilograms of his land’s products but only made 18,000 afs due to falling prices.

According to him, if vegetables prices did not increase, he won’t be able to make more than 50,000 afs till the end of current year, compared to 120,000 afs last year. He also mentioned 15,000 afs spent on planting the vegetables.

He also added 1400 kilograms of his products were wasted due to lack of good market for vegetables.

He sold seven kilograms of tomato for 30 afs, eggplant 20 afs, okras 150 afs, green beans 150 afs and pepper 140 afs this year, while the same amount of tomatoes were sold for 60 afs, eggplant for 40 afs, okras for 250 afs, green beans for 250 afs and pepper for 260 afs last year.

Jamshid, a farmer in Deh Mullahinfo-icon Yousuf village, who has cultivated several vegetables in his three acres of land, also complains about the decreased prices of vegetables.

Jamshid said he collected just 50,000 afs from his products and the gross income may reach 100,000 afs till the end of this year. Jamish earned 300,000 last year.

He and several other farmers complained about lack of standard cold storages and asked the government to solve this major issue.

Jamshid said three small cold storages were operational in Deh Mullah Yousuf village but they were not standard and could not preserve vegetables.

“If the government makes standard and bigger cold storages, we will be able to store enough vegetables and sell them according to the needs of the people against a reasonable price.”

Mir Agha, a vegetable seller in Charikar city, said after Pakistan stopped the import of vegetables, the price of these products decreased by up to 75 percent.

He also said a pile of vegetables from Parwan was being exported to Kabulinfo-icon and other provinces, but the export volume from Parwan was low this year because farmers in other provinces have also cultivated vegetables.

Mir Agha added he also suffered losses due decreased prices and lack of buyers for vegetables.

According to him, he had a benefit of 1500 afs last year, but this number decreased to just 500 afs this year.

Abdul Karim Farzam, head of Parwan province agricultureinfo-icon and livestock department, confirmed the low market for vegetables in the province.

He added the stoppage of vegetables export to Pakistan had not only affected Parwan province. he said the government was trying to find a good market for vegetables and their export to European countries through Turkmenistan and Chabahar port in Iran.

He said they were trying to find good market for the vegetables from Parwan province, but didn’t provide more details.

He said: “We have already discussed with national traders in Kabul to find a better market for vegetables in and out of the country so our farmers don’t suffer anymore.”

He added his department has made 500 small cold storages in Parwan province.

Talking about the standard of these storages, he said the facilities were set up taking advantage of the available resources in order farmers could store their products for a course of time.

He said a vegetable market would be built in Charikar at a cost of 100,000 US dollars. He also said a grapes juice factory in Parwan would facilitate the storing process of vegetables as the factory possessed a big cold storage.

SMEA/ma

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