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Spices Board targets $880-m exports

September 18, 2007 13:54 IST

In an effort to increase the exports of spices from India, the Spices Board has set a target turnover of $880 million this financial year against $800 million last year.

Moreover, the board has set a target of $10 billion exports by 2017.

Addressing a UPASI annual conference, board chairman V J Kurian said almost 60 per cent of the exports were in value-added form and the imports had not increased in proportion to the exports.

According to the board, area under cardamom cultivation is bound to witness a drastic fall this year. The export of the commodity took a beating from 863 tonnes in 2005-06 to 650 tonnes the following year.

Between April and July 2007, only 145

tonnes were exported, Kurian said. The average auction price, however, moved upwards from Rs 313/kg last year to over Rs 400/kg this year.

The board has suggested a special purpose fund for replantation and rejuvenation of cardamom on a total outlay of Rs 211.35 cr during the 10th plan period. "The scheme awaits government approval," Kurian said.

Pepper is facing a bad time both on the price and productivity front, he said and suggested the need for replanting pepper. As far as vanilla is concerned, it has run into a bit of trouble with the values dipping to an all time low of $20/kg this year compared to $312/kg three years back.

Commodity Online