Kolkata: Amid indications that the US would allow import of Indian mangoes this season, a leading American trade body has said the Indian varieties of the fruit are likely to dominate the 2.5 lakh tonne per annum US market if import is allowed.
“Since the news about the possibility of import of Indian mangoes to the US appeared, we have been getting frequent queries from speciality grocery stores as well as transporters,” spokesperson of the United States Indian Business Council (USIBC) said. The spokesperson said although US consumers were relatively unfamiliar with mangoes, in recent years the fruit has been getting popular, following imports mainly from Mexico.
Currently, Mexican variety dominated the US market. However, “Mexican mangoes do not compare in terms of sweetness and varieties offered by the Indian mangoes,” the spokesperson said.
USIBC has been steadily building up a case for allowing import of Indian mangoes to the US. As part of the same exercise, the council planned to organize the first-ever ‘Indian Mango-Tasting Festival’ at its Global India Summit in Washington from 27 June.
Commerce minister Kamal Nath, along with a number of businessmen, including Reliance chairman Mukesh Ambani, Ficci president Habil Khorakivala and Tarun Das of the Confederation of Indian Industry, are scheduled to attend the summit.
A business delegation from West Bengal, led by state industry minister Nirupam Sen, will also attend the summit. When an American business delegation, led by USIBC president Ron Somers, had called on West Bengal chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee in March, he had made a special request to the team to work on allowing import of Indian mangoes to the US.
Indian mangoes have never been allowed to be exported to the US because they have not undergone pests risk analysis. A major breakthrough was achieved last year when an agreement was signed between the US Department of Agriculture and the Indian Department of Agriculture and Co-operation to resolve a 17-year-old trade dispute on potential pests and disease. It agreed on a framework outlining requirements for bilateral trade of goods treated by irradiation.