New Zealand-India formulates blueprint to enhance Apple production in Himachal



Solan (April 18): New Zealand and India have formulated a collaborative and strategic blueprint to enhance apple productivity in Himachal Pradesh.

A five-members horticulture expert team from New Zealand led by Dr Andy Macgrath, a leading horticulturist, visited the main campus of Dr Y S Parmar University of Horticulture & Forestry, Nauni, today. The team formulated a collaborative and strategic blueprint in presence of Dr KR Dhiman, Vice-Chancellor of Nauni University after discussing the issues to increase the productivity of apple in Himachal Pradesh. Earlier the team interacted with faculty members, officials of the university and dozen of progressive orchardists.

Dr Dhiman apprised the team about various ongoing activities on fruit crops in the university. He further informed that Himachal
Pradesh is known as apple state inspite of low productivity. Dr PS Chauhan, head, Department of Fruit Science,
highlighted the present scenario and future thrusts in apple cultivation in HP. Dr Chauhan stated that Himachal Pradesh has typical temperate zone having sloppy terrains, poor soil fertility, soil erosion and water runoff, rainfed conditions, etc. and apple cultivation is being done under marginal conditions.

Dr Andy Macgrath delivered a talk on apple orcharding in New Zealand. Thereafter, a detailed discussion was held among
progressive farmers and faculty members on appropriate steps to be taken for enhancement of productivity of apple in the state. The orchardists were of the view that coloured and sweet varieties of apple are preferred by consumers of India and emphasized the need to procure the genotypes of such varieties from abroad. Kamalender Kanwar, a progressive orchardist from Kumarsain, stressed introduction if rootstocks of Cornell Geneva series and Brook Field variety of apple for the replacement of senile and very old orchards raised on seedlings.

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