Pajhwok Afghan News

Almond price down 32pc, yield 15pc in Samangan

AIBAK (Pajhwok): Almond yield in northern Samangan province has decreased by 15 percent and its price on average also declined by 32 percent due to restrictions imposed to prevent the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic in the province.

Haji Naqibullah, a dried fruits trader in Aibak City, the provincial capital, told Pajhwok Afghan News currently the price of seven kilograms of almond hovered between 700 afghanis and 4,000 afghanis based on it quality.

He said last year seven kilograms of almond was sold for 1,000 to 6,000 afghanis. These almonds included different types such as Sattar Baei, Khairuddini, Shakour Baei, Qambari, Sundaqi, Kaghazi, Sangak and others.

According to Naqibullah, the reason behind the drop in almond prices in the province was lack of foreign buyers in Afghanistan this year due to restrictions on preventing the spread of coronavirus.

He recalled in the past, almost 60 percent of the province almonds were exported to India, Turkey, Pakistan and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) as Afghan almond was known for its high quality.

The businessman further added that last year he bought more than 25 tons of almonds in Samangan and sold them to foreign and domestic traders in Kabul, but this year he transferred six tons from Samangan to Kabul and sold them on domestic traders.

Meanwhile, Najibullah Joya, an official at the provincial agriculture department, told Pajhwok that their evaluation showed around a 15 percent decline in almond yield in the province this year, compared to the previous year.

The almond yield in the province was estimated to reach 2,887 tons this year while last year the production reached 3,397 tons, he added.

He blamed the outbreak of a plant disease (shathole) in almond trees for the reduced harvest this year in the province.

Almond trees in Samangan exist over 5,000 hectares of land in the capital and in Hazrat Sultan and KhuramSarbagh districts of the province.

Pk/ma

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