Home   >   NEWS & VIEWS   >   News

  • Almond production dips as people prefer to grow apples

    Nov 16th, 2015

    The production of almonds has taken a dip in Pulwama as large numbers of people have preferred to cultivate the apples here.The farmers here have turned to apple cultivation after cutting almond trees. In many villages of Pulwama farmers are converting their land into apple orchards.Hundreds of kanals of land have been cleared off from almond trees in Koil, Payar, Chandigam, Lajoora, Pahnard, Pachnargd and Thokernag villages.In Pachnard and Gundwoder villages only 10 per cent of land is under almond cultivation and the rest of the land has been converted into apple orchards.Ghazi Khursheed, a local activist, said that the table land stretching from Parigam to Rohmu village was suitable for almond cultivation in Pulwama. However after the persistent decline in production the main reason for famers turning to apple cultivation is that it gets good price in market, Ghazi said.“The farmers need technical guidance on how to increase production but field employees of the horticulture department never show up and ask people how to increase the production,” he added.Assad-ul-lah, a resident of Rohmu, said that he converted his 3kanal almond field into the apple orchard. “ The low production and drying of almond trees was main reason for him to turn to apple cultivation. The Parigam- Rohmu table land was known for growing almond trees, but it is fast losing the grandeur,” he added.“Farmers in Koil, Payar and Rajoora have been using JCB dozers to uproot almond trees because almonds cultivation has become less productive and beneficial to them,” said Shabnam Fayaz, a resident of Lajoora.“The government has no focus on dry fruits, all marketing, grading and packing facilities have been developed for apple which lure famers to turn to its cultivation, government has no scheme for almonds,” he added.Chief Horticulture Officer Pulwama, Farooq Ahmad said that it is comparative high price and market demand for apples which turns people to shun the almonds.