ISLAMABAD

Federal Minister for National Food Security and Research (NFS&R) Sikandar Hayat Khan Bosan has inaugurated the first-ever locally manufactured hot water treatment plant at National Agricultural Research Council (NARC) Islamabad that will aid in promoting disease-free export of mangoes.

The Federal Minister NFS&R issued instructions to NARC to manufacture 15 to 20 hot water treatment plants every month over the next three months and distribute them among farmers to augment the pest-free export of mangoes. It would facilitate the farmers by improving safety standards of mango crop and thus enhance its export to EU and other countries.

On this occasion, Seerat Asghar, Federal Secretary, Ministry of National Food Security and Research and other high officials of the ministry were also present.

Dr Iftikhar Ahmad, Chairman PARC, Dr Nadeem Amjad, Member (NRD) and Dr M Azeem Khan, DG NARC and Senior Engineer of ABEI, NARC were given detailed briefing to the dignitaries about the hot water treatment plant at NARC.

The main threat to pest-free export of mangoes was the absence of required number of hot water treatment plants in the country, as present only two plants are functioning in the Karachi which absolutely inefficient to meet the demand of mango exporters.

Keeping in view the requirement of mango exporters, the Ministry took immediate step and directed PARC to locally manufacture small units of hot water treatment plants for mango growers. Consequently, the Federal Minister NFS&R inaugurated the first-ever locally manufactured plant. The Minister said his Ministry had also put in place a comprehensive plan to control the menace the fruit fly which was the main threat to the export of mangoes.