In an exclusive interview to AgroTypos, Dr. Jagvir Singh Yadav, the Chief Director of the «Premium Farm Fresh Produce Ltd» in India, referred to the way of operation of Indian vegetable market, the criteria for cooperation with producers, the fruit and vegetable trade in the market of New Delhi and the prospects for cooperation with Greece. The «Premium Farm Fresh Produce Ltd» company is a member of WUWM (World Union Of Wholesale Markets) and forms the first attempt to establish private wholesale markets across India.
The vegetable market in Greece belongs to the State. The State gives area to merchants to sell their fruits and vegetables in retail. Could you please describe us the operation mode of the Indian vegetable market?
Recently (2004 onwards) Government of India has allowed the operation of private fruit and vegetable markets, so as to provide alternative options for growers and traders in order to earn better prices. Therefore, both systems (State owned and private owned) are available in our country. The market authority allots area (either long lease or on purchase basis) to merchants to sell products only in wholesale. Retail is not allowed by law in wholesale market, however, practically it does happen on many occasions. Open auctions are compulsory in all wholesale markets imposing tariffs and market regulations.
What are the criteria for cooperation with producers and what fruit and vegetable transactions are conducted daily at the New Delhi India Premium Market?
Every Indian producer has the opportunity to choose any wholesale market or any merchant they want to work with, under a committee, which represents them at auctions and is responsible for their payments. A lot of merchants and local suppliers participate in auctions, as the volumes of fruits and vegetables are quite large. Main Wholesale Market of Delhi, i.e. Azadpur Fruit and Vegetable Market, handles approximately 5 million tonnes of fruits and vegetables and remains open 300 days a year. Similarly, in other locations the average handling size is 5 million tonnes of fruits and vegetables. There are more than 7,000 wholesale markets including grain in India and 35,000 rural periodic markets operating in specific areas. All purchases work under a single network and not in isolation as primary, secondary and terminal markets.
Recently Greek plums were exported to India for the first time. What other fruits and vegetables is India interested in importing from Greece?
I have personally visited the area of Thessaloniki, where plums of a very good quality are produced. India may also be interested in importing Greek apples, almonds, walnuts and other fruits grown in Greece’s mild temperate climate. India is a large and dynamic market (is going to have 1 billion population in less than 35 years). We look forward to increasing trade cooperation with Greece. We could also have collaboration in wholesale market, in network basis, with dual licensing facilities to merchants of both countries.