Lahore: Pakistan Horticulture Development and Export Company (PHDEC) has urged the United States to allow shipment of commercial mango consignments through sea from Pakistan to America to make the process profitable for the Pakistani exporters.
First consignment of 1000kgs of Pakistani mangoes for United States is receiving a very outstanding response due to its quality and packaging and it will open a new market to mango growers in Pakistan and make additional choices available to US consumers.
However, shipment through air is expensive and it costs around Rs 300 per kilogram while shipment through sea would cost exporters only Rs 25 per kilogram thus making mangoes export more feasible and profitable. Pakistan Horticulture Development and Export Company (PHDEC) Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Bashir Hussein said that the company had already successfully shipped mangoes through sea last year to the United Kingdom (UK) and over 40 containers were shipped.
He was addressing a press conference here on Tuesday. PHDEC Manager Marketing Kashif Niazi and others were also present on this occasion. He claimed that the United States has agreed to consider the proposal of shipment of mangoes through sea from Pakistan to America after end of current mango export season.
Bashir Hussein said 27th July became another milestone in the export history of Pakistan while first Mango consignment from Pakistan leaves Allama Iqbal Airport Lahore carrying around 1000kgs of mangoes and thus opening a new market for Pakistani exporters. He claimed that two exporters might also be shipping their commercial consignment to US on the same pattern in next 10 to 15 days.
He said that the PHDEC started efforts in year 2010 for this task but could not make it in that season. However during the current season, PHDEC lined up all necessary arrangements at domestic level for the dispatch of the consignment on July 27, 2011 following a strict timeline derived by the company for the purpose. PHDEC also constituted the Quality Assurance Team for the consignment comprising experts from PHDEC, UAF and DPP so that each department could take its respective responsibility. A pre-harvest visit of the orchard was conducted on July 13, 2011 to check the fruit quality, maturity and to earmark the trees for product.
The product was harvested using the latest harvesting techniques under the supervision of Quality Assurance Team, which includes washing, water heat treatment and pre-cooling of the consignment. APHIS representatives in Pakistan remained in close contact with PHDEC officials at all stages of the preparation. The stacked consignment dispatched for airport in a reefer container maintaining the temperature advised by the Supply Chain Experts and it was further stacked on plastic pallets before boarding the flight. The consignment was irradiated at Sadex on July 29, 2011 and then was dispatched to Consulate General of Pakistan in Chicago for the launching ceremony.
Asked why not the consignment be irradiated in Lahore, Bashir Hussein said that the United States had put a very strict condition. They said that one US inspector would be sitting in the Irradiation plant on the expenses of the exporters throughout the season. Expenses of the inspector would have cost US 30-35,000 dollars besides issues of security. So it was thought appropriate to send the consignment to Chicago and then to Sadex for irradiation.
He said that the Company would ask for some more relaxation from the US government from next mango exports season. He said that the Company had recently signed an agreement with Lebanon for mango export while talks are in the final stage with Australia. A delegation of South Korea will also be visiting Pakistan on August 04 to look into the possibilities of mango export from Pakistan.
PHDEC Chief said that the Company was also working on export of dates, potatoes, onion and citrus besides mangoes from Pakistan. He said dates export programme is being launched in co-operation of Sindh Investment Board and the government of Balochistan.
For more information, contact:
Pakistan Horticulture Development and Export Company
Ministry of Commerce, Government of Pakistan
30-N, Model Town Extension, Lahore, Pakistan