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Mango Growers in Khammam Embrace Fruit Bagging as a Promising Technique

Fruit bagging, a crop management practice used around the world, is gaining popularity, if slowly, among mango growers in the former Khammam region.

Shivam Dwivedi
Telangana government's Rythu Bandhu input support has helped cover the cost of the fruit sack
Telangana government's Rythu Bandhu input support has helped cover the cost of the fruit sack

Fruit bagging is the practice of wrapping fruits such as mango, guava, jackfruit, and banana in paper or polythene bags. Three years ago, the approach was launched among mango growers in Khammam and Kothagudem districts.

According to J Mariyanna, district horticulture officer, approximately 500 farmers in Kothagudem are utilizing the technology on approximately 3000 acres of land out of the total area of 11000 acres covered by mango orchards in the district.

The department is putting on awareness campaigns to teach farmers about the benefits of fruit bagging in mango production. Many farmers are interested in using the procedure, and fruit bagging is done roughly 30 days before harvesting, according to him.

The approach has yet to spread among farmers in Khammam, where mango is farmed on 31,800 acres. Around 150 farmers utilize it on 1000 acres since the cost and labour involved limit farmers from embracing it even though they are interested, according to horticulture officer Anasuya.

Fruit bagging helps to solve bug, pest attacks and illnesses concerns as it inhibits interaction between the host and insects like fruit flies, leafhoppers, fruit borers, diseases like anthracnose, Mariyanna explained.

The strategy will increase the output of high-quality exportable mangoes while reducing pesticide residues. According to farmer V Sridhar from Yerragunta of Annapureddypalle in Kothagudem district, it reduces latex burns and fungal stains on the fruits.

On his 20-acre mango orchard, he employs the fruit bagging process. According to him, wrapping each fruit costs Rs.4, Rs.2 for a bag, and Rs.2 for labour, and a tonne of fruits costs roughly Rs.15,000. He believes the work is worthwhile because fruits are favoured by exporters. Rythu Bandhu's assistance helps to cover the bills.

Banoth Ravinder of Govindarala in Kamepalli mandal in Khammam district claimed the Telangana government's Rythu Bandhu input support has helped him cover the costs of fruit bagging. He claims to have been utilizing the procedure for three years. Fruit bagging decreases the need for pesticide spraying, gives the fruit a yellowish smooth texture, boosts the nutritional value of the fruit, raises its weight by 100 to 150 grammes per fruit, and covers the expenditures.

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