India to lodge protest with EU on Alphonso ban

India to lodge protest with EU on Alphonso ban

A day after the European Union temporarily banned imports of India’s famed Indian Alphonso mangoes, the government on Tuesday decided it would raise the issue of the unilateral ban with the EU trade commissioner.

“The commerce minister is expected to soon write a letter in this regard to EU Trade Commissioner Karl De Gucht,” a commerce ministry official said.“The EU’s move is a unilateral action. They should not do this,” he said, after the commerce minister discussed the issue with ministry officials.

The EU’s decision to ban mango imports from India till December 2015 comes after authorities found fruit flies in some consignments last year. Besides mangoes, it also banned imports of a few other vegetables from India.

The ban, which comes into force from May 1, will impact India’s mango exports to the EU’s 28 countries.

Traders from Mumbai’s APMC market claimed that the ban has resulted in a glut, halving the price of the most coveted variety of mangoes.

The UK imports nearly 160 lakh mangoes from India in a market worth nearly 6 million pounds a year.

India, the world’s largest exporter of mangoes, sells about 65,000-70,000 tonnes of all varieties of the fruit in the global market out of a total production of 15-16 lakh tonnes.

Alphonso, the most expensive variety of mangoes, is grown in Western India, mainly in the Konkan region. 

Earlier in 1989, the US imposed an import ban on Indian mangoes, including the Alphonso variety. However, the ban was lifted in April 2007.

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