Fruit growers' body claims govt not acting against carton cartel



Shimla: Himachal Pradesh Fruit and Vegetable Growers Confederation today strongly condemned the state government for its alleged failure to make proper arrangements for the ongoing apple season.

In a statement issued today, Sanjay Chauhan, general secretary of the Confederation claimed that there is an acute shortage of packing material like carton and trays, which are not available even with HPMC and Himfed. “60 per cent of the apple season is still pending and growers are totally in disarray. This shortage is due to formation of a cartel by carton manufacturers and despite 40 per cent increase in the prices before the season started, they have still created pseudo scarcity of cartons and are making hefty profits by overcharging by up to Rs 10 to 15 per piece. This has resulted into heavy loses to the fruit growers who were already facing big problems due to mismanagement,” he claimed.

He also criticised closure of AIPIL carton factory at Pragatinagar in Kotkhai, alleging that it was done under pressure from the carton and tray manufacturers. The Confederation demanded that the state government should intervene immediately to make cartons and trays available to the growers through state-owned agencies.

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