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Exotic fruits to become scarce in India

January 22, 2004 17:51 IST

The government has brought out a new law, which would restrict imports of vegetables and fruits into the country and make exotic fruits such as kiwis, rambutans and melons forbidden for Indian consumers.

This has been done by way of new Plant Quarantine Order, which imposes stringent standards for imports of agricultural articles.

The law has been designed to meet new requirements under the World Trade Organisation regime, which is aimed at regulating import of agricultural articles into the country, official sources said.

With the complete lifting of Quantitative Restrictions in 2002, imports of exotic fruits and vegetables had witnessed a surge with even Mother Dairy selling fruits like Kiwi in its outlets.

No consignment of plants or plant products or other regulated articles can be imported into the country without a valid permit as per the order which came into effect from January 01, 2004.

The order mentions a list of products on which the Pest Risk Analysis had been carried out based on global standards and can be imported by following certain conditions.

However, those products wherein PRA has not been carried out by authorities like kiwis, rambutans, melon and mangoes cannot be imported.

It may be noted that very stringent sanitary and phyto sanitary norms are followed world over and even popular Indian fruit like mango has not been allowed to be sold in various countries like Australia and New Zealand.

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