Mumbai: After a gap of 18-years, the first consignment of Indian mangoes is ready to be exported to the United States today, after receiving necessary clearance from the US regulators.
The Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC) and Board of Radiation and Isotope Technology (BRIT) got a green signal for the export of the mangoes on the night of 25April.
The first and a small consignment of ‘Alphonso’ and ‘Kesar’ varieties of mangoes consisting of 150 boxes has been processed today at the Lasalgaon food irradiation plant in Maharashtra of BARC/BRIT units of the Department of Atomic Energy.
“The consignment is ready after irradiation process to go to Mumbai any moment for export to New York this evening cargo flight,” BARC Food Technology Chief A K Sharma, who is stationed at Lasalgaon for the purpose, told PTI.
The certificate of approval from the American Plant Health Inspection services of the US Department of Agriculture will now enable the process of export to commence. US stopped the import of mangoes 18 years ago as it felt that Indian farmers were using pesticides that were way beyond their prescribed limits. This was the version given by the Agricultural Products Export Development Authority.
However, the import was revived after a request made by President George W Bush after meeting Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in New Delhi last year.
“The food irradiation plant at Lasalgaon in Maharashtra has been chosen for preservation of mangoes to fulfil the quarantine requirements of the US Department of Agriculture and experts from India and US worked on the necessary protocols,” BRIT Cheif Executive A K Kohli said.