The 12th State Level Pineapple Festival cum Sellers and Buyers Meet and Youth Festival, 2019 organised by the Development Organisation Andro Kendra (DOAK) under the joint aegis of Eastern Border Area Development Authority (EBADA) and the North Eastern Council (NEC) has begun from Thursday at Yairipok Thambalnu Market in Imphal East district in Manipur.
Manipur Forest and Environment Minister, Th Shyamkumar Singh has been the chief guest of the event.
On the concluding day of the festival on July 7, there would be a special programme - Manipur Pineapple Queen Contest 2019.
Speaking on the occasion, the chief guest said that Manipur has been producing pineapples at about 10,000 tonnes per hectare which for itself speaks that the State is indeed the highest producer and exporter of the juicy fruits in the country. This high product has been possible thanks to the farmers and the cultivators who have been ‘confined’ to their land, labouring on the soil of the State for years with no proper market.
Deputy Speaker of the Manipur Legislative assembly, K Robindro presiding over the function said that the pineapples were the products of the farmers in and around the Ngarian hills in Imphal east. Imphal east is the highest producer of pineapples in the State, he added. The fair which witnessed over thousands of visitors from all over the State had to bring in the security forces to deal with the unexpected crowd and the traffic jam along the Imphal-Yairipok road, he added.
Principal Secretary Department of Horticulture and Soil Conservation, J.C Ramthanga said that the department is not only focusing on the plantation of the fruit but also the market for the farmers at the same time. He further said that the fruits have already been airlifted outside and the department is also concerned with increasing the production.
According to Amusana, a member of the organizing committee, over 240 pineapple growers of the surrounding area participated in the fair with each stall displaying pineapples ranging from 10,000 to 20,000.
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