Apple growers being misled on universal cartons: Himachal Horticulture Minister Jagat Singh Negi : The Tribune India

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Apple growers being misled on universal cartons: Himachal Horticulture Minister Jagat Singh Negi

Horticulture Minister says decision will be implemented strictly

Apple growers being misled on universal cartons: Himachal Horticulture Minister Jagat Singh Negi

Horticulture Minister Jagat Singh Negi today reiterated that apple would be marketed only in universal cartons and those flouting the decision will face action. File photo



Tribune News Service

Shimla, July 9

Horticulture Minister Jagat Singh Negi today reiterated that apple would be marketed only in universal cartons and those flouting the decision will face action. While claiming that 99 per cent apple growers were happy with the government’s decision to replace telescopic carton with the standardised universal carton, Negi said a handful people with vested interests were trying to create problems and misleading people about the packaging material.

“The decision to bring in universal carton has not been taken in hurry. The government had several rounds of discussions with the growers and other stakeholders before replacing telescopic carton with the universal one. So, the government is going to implement the decision strictly,” said Negi.

The Minister added that there was no shortage of universal cartons and these were now easily available at various places. Even as Negi has made it clear that apple would be packed and marketed only in universal cartons, regardless of whether it was marketed in the APMC markets or outside the state, some growers said the state government could not force them to use these cartons in case they decided to market their produce outside the APMC markets.

However, the Horticulture Minister maintains that only universal cartons will have to be used for the packaging of apple. “We have notified the decision regarding the use of universal carton after doing our homework. The APMC Act allows us to slap penalty if telescopic carton is used for packaging of apple. The penalty includes the seizure of the produce as well,” he said.

Besides, Negi has assured that the freight for transporting apple would be charged on per kg/per km-basis. Normally, the Deputy Commissioners fix the freight on per kg/per km-basis, but the transporters charge freight on the basis on the number of boxes.

The growers fear that unless the freight is charged on the basis of per kg/per km-basis for universal cartons, they would suffer losses.

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