Shimla: In a big blow to the apple growers, Adani Agro Fresh has once again reduced apple procurement prices, this time by Rs 2. 

As per the revised rates, Adani Agro Fresh Limited will now procure extra large premium apples at Rs 48 per kg,  large, medium and small size apples will be brought at Rs 74, extra small apples will be brought at Rs 66, extra extra small will be brought at Rs 56 while ‘pittu’ apples will be brought at Rs 48. 

Earlier, the company had announced its procurement prices on August 15. Initially, the company announced that it will buy premium extra large apples at Rs 52, large, medium and small size apples at Rs 75, extra small apples at Rs 68, extra extra small apples at Rs 60 and pittu apples at Rs 52 per kg. 

However, on August 27, the company announced new rates which were slightly lower than the previous procurement prices. Now, the company has once again reduced apple prices from September 1 onwards.

Apple prices in fruit markets have also witnessed a sharp decline in apple rates. At present, premium quality apple boxes are being sold at around Rs 1,600 to 1,700. 

The company has its three stores in Shimla district, which is also the major producer of apples in the state. Apple procurement will start from September 1 at the company’s Sainj store and Mehandali Store while procurement of apples will start on September 2 at its Bithal store. 

The spokesperson of the company said that the new procurement prices have been fixed after assessing the market. He said that apple rates in fruit markets are down while other private companies who are buying apples are also buying apples at cheaper rates.

“It is difficult for us to continue buying apples at higher prices” he added.

Meanwhile, Sanyukta Kisan Manch has expressed its displeasure over this decision and has threatened that it will not let the company to transport apples from CA stores. 

Manch’s Convener Harish Chauhan said that the company is taking advantage of the apple orchardists and the government has given a free hand to loot the orchardists by setting arbitrary prices.

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Navneet Rathore is a Shimla based journalist having two-years of experience in the field of journalism. Navneet is a post-graduate in Journalism and Mass Communications from Himachal Pradesh University, Shimla and is specialised in crime, education, health, environment, agriculture and Horticulture beats.