Part of: GS Prelims and GS-III – Economy
In news In a major boost to exports of exotic fruit, consignments of fiber & mineral rich ‘dragon fruit’ have been exported for the first time to London, United Kingdom & Kingdom of Bahrain.
- They are sourced from farmers of Gujarat & West Bengal,
- APEDA is also making efforts to export it to other European countries to get better price realisation to the farmers of their produce.
What is Dragon Fruit?
- In India, dragon fruit is also referred to as Kamalam.
- It is scientifically referred to as Hylocereusundatus,
- Production of ‘dragon fruit’ commenced in India in early 1990s and it was grown as home gardens.
- Due to high export value, the exotic ‘dragon fruit’ has become increasingly popular in recent years in the country and it has been taken up for cultivation by farmers in different states.
- Three main varieties of dragon fruit: white flesh with pink skin, red flesh with pink skin, and white flesh with yellow skin.
- However, the red and white flesh is in demand among the consumers.
- Indian States that grow Dragon fruit: Karnataka, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Odisha, Andhra Pradesh, West Bengal and Andaman and Nicobar Islands.
- Major Dragon fruit growing countries: Malaysia, Thailand, the Philippines, the USA and Vietnam
- These countries are the major competitors for Indian Dragon Fruit.
- Growth requirements and benefits:
- It requires less water
- It can be grown in various kinds of soils.
- The fruit contains fiber, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.
- It can help in repairing the cell damage caused by oxidative stress and reduce inflammation,
- It can also improve the digestive system.
What is APEDA?
- Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA) is an apex body under the Union Ministry of Commerce and Industry
- It is responsible for the export promotion of agricultural products.
- It was established under the APEDA Act of 1985.
- Promotion of exports of agricultural and processed food products.
- Promotion of export oriented production and development of the Scheduled products.
- To make Improvement in areas such as packaging
- Setting standards and specifications for the scheduled products
- Financial assistance, reliefs and subsidies to the related industries.
- Provide training in the related areas
News Source: PIB