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Heatwaves Significantly Reduced Mango Production

A severe heatwave has engulfed much of India. In the last 122 years, March 2022 has been the hottest month ever recorded. Farmers and agricultural experts both believe that mango production will be lower this year, which could lead to an increase in mango prices.

Shivam Dwivedi
Mango Tree
Mango Tree

Mango farmers were overjoyed two months ago to see dense white clusters of mango blossoms amidst green leaves in his lush garden, hoping for a bumper crop this year. However, with the sudden onset of a severe heatwave in March, hopes of a bountiful harvest and flowers faded, as they could not withstand the rising temperatures.

As we have seen, in February & March, the flowers were in bloom. Every farmer had a feeling the yield would be good this year. And these flowers will bear fruit. But after extreme heatwaves, mango flowers on the trees dried up as a result of the heatwave. The rising heat during bad weather ruined all of the flowers. The farmer went on to say that if the summer had been a little later in May and June, the mangoes would have fully ripened.

A severe heatwave has engulfed much of India. In the last 122 years, March 2022 has been the hottest month ever recorded. Farmers and agricultural experts both believe that mango production will be lower this year, which could lead to an increase in mango prices.

Its impact is expected to be felt internationally as well, given that India is the world's largest mango producer. According to the data, India's annual production during the 2019-20 crop year (June-July) was 20.26 million tonnes, accounting for half of total global production. There are approximately 1,000 mango varieties grown here, but only 30 are commercially used. According to data from the Ministry of External Affairs, India's mango exports increased from 20,302 tonnes in 1987-88 to 46,789.60 tonnes in 2019-20.

India: Largest Producer of Mango

According to the Ministry of External Affairs, India produces nearly half of all mangoes in the world. The Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA) is a self-governing organization that reports to the Department of Commerce. This organization has been tasked with promoting mango exports. The Alphonso mango from Maharashtra is the country's most popular export mango; other popular varieties include Kesar, Langra, and Chausa.

According to the Indian Horticulture Database, which is managed by the Indian Agricultural Research Institute (ICAR), Uttar Pradesh is the country's leading producer of mango, followed by Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Karnataka, and Bihar. Apart from the early onset of a heatwave in March this year, horticulturists blame the country's prolonged winter for low mango production.

"The winter this year was prolonged," Dheeraj Tiwari, an agricultural scientist at Krishi Vigyan Kendra Unnao. “The cold we felt in December and January lasted until February. The temperature suddenly rose several degrees in March, which was much higher than in previous years," he explained.

According to the agricultural scientist, mango flowers were abundant this year. "The drug could not be sprayed because of the sudden rise in temperature, and the mango flowers died before they could become fruit," Tiwari explained

Increased damage as a result of insecticide spraying

According to agricultural scientist Tiwari, cultivators who used insecticides carelessly have seen their yields drop even further. "This year, we discovered that farmers who used fewer pesticides still had some mango fruit on their trees, but those who used a lot of chemicals and pesticides had a lot of crop damage."

He explained the reason for this as follows: "All of the chemicals and insecticides we use generate too much heat for the flowers, causing them to wilt. Sulfur is also released as the temperature rises. As some farmers have done, it should not be used on crops." "It is very important that farmers use insecticides carefully on the advice of agricultural experts rather than relying on the words of the pesticide-seller."

Farmers, meanwhile, complained about the need for more pesticides, which increased their costs. However, with the sudden onset of a severe heatwave in March, hopes of a bountiful harvest and flowers faded, as they could not withstand the rising temperatures.

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