Most traders and labourers have avoided the market as a precaution against catching the virus, leading to disruption in supply of fresh vegetables in most urban centres.
The ongoing lockdown and disruption of supply chains, especially of fresh fruits and vegetables, has presented an opportunity to Farmers Producers Companies (FPC) and farmers' groups to enter direct retail sales.
While Sahyadri Farms, the Nashik-based FPC, has started delivering to urban markets of Pune, Mumbai and Nashik, the group of farmers producing residue-free vegetables in Nashik have taken to testing the city's retail market to directly sell their produce.
Concerned over the rapid spread of the coronavirus pandemic, the central and state governments had imposed a curfew from March 23. Supply of essential commodities, although kept outside the ambit of the lockdown, has been severely hit as wholesale markets have remained shut.
Most traders and labourers have avoided the market as a precaution against catching the virus, leading to disruption in supply of fresh vegetables in most urban centres. The Maharashtra agriculture department has roped in various FPCs to ensure constant supply of vegetables in urban areas.
Individual FPCs have also started filling in the vacuum created in urban markets.
Sahyadri Farms, the country’s leading grape exporter based in Mohadi village, Dindori taluka of Nashik district, has decided to ensure the produce of its farmers is sold directly in the urban markets of Pune, Mumbai and Nashik.
The company has decided to accept bulk orders of minimum baskets of collated fruits and vegetables to deliver to the doorsteps of housing societies in Pune. A similar service, the company said, will be made available in Mumbai and Nashik where the company has designated stores also. The company can be contacted at 7030038881 (Rupesh Jadhav, Mumbai) and 9423783135 (Mahesh Shelake, Pune).
Similarly in Nashik, the residue-free vegetable growers with MVP Agriculture Polytechnic College are offering pre-order service for vegetables. Customers can get the pre-designated vegetable boxes home delivered through the app run by the college.
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