KARACHI: The target of mango exports is in danger due to the poor strategy of the Plant Protection Department.
Mangoes exported from Pakistan are subjected to hot water treatment to protect them from fruit flies. Due to discriminatory policy and favoritism of the Plant Protection Department, 90% of the 35 plants have been shut down.
Pakistan is facing a loss of 44 million dollars due to the closure of hot water treatment plants.
In a statement, Chairman Union of Small and Medium Enterprises Zulfikar Thawar has also urged the mango exporters to immediately present this matter to the Ministry of Science and Technology, Ministry of Commerce, Ministry of Agriculture.
A petition should also be filed in the High Court questioning the unfounded objections raised by the department concerned.
Pakistan Fruit and Vegetable Association has expressed concerns over the discriminatory and biased policies of the Plant Protection Department in a letter sent to the Federal Ministry of National Food Security.
The letter states that under the guise of new SOPs, approved treatment plants have been allowed and modern plants costing crores of rupees have been shut down.
The letter states that the Plant Protection Department has refused to issue NOCs to plants for minor objections which have nothing to do with the basic functions of the plants.
The plants which were not given NOC were processing mangoes exported to Europe, Iran, Australia, China, Kenya and Iraq for the past several years and never received any complaints from their buyers.
As 90% of the hot water treatment plants have been shut down, there has been increased pressure on the operating plants and they are treating mangoes beyond their capacity.
This has raised fears that the treatment of mangoes exported from Pakistan will not meet the international standards. In this case, there may be a ban on the export of fruit fly infected mangoes from Pakistan.
PFVA has informed the Federal Ministry of Food Security that special elements are being benefited by non-approval of hot water treatment plants, which should be taken note of and action should be taken against the officers who harm the national trade.
Source: Express News