The Himachal Pradesh government announced the adoption of the Agriculture Produce Market Committee (APMC) Act, as well as universal cartons for apple packing and other horticulture, produce in the state on Saturday.
Himachal Pradesh’s apple farmers applauded the decisions. Farmers have been calling for the execution of all three Acts, including the Legal Metrology Act 2009. The APMC Act 2005, and the HP Passenger and Goods Taxation Act 1955, which will not only help them get fair rates for their produce but will also protect them from intermediaries. State Horticulture Minister Jagat Singh Negi stated that the state’s Congress government is committed to executing the APMC Act.
The minister said that the state government will soon meet with carton manufacturers and direct them to begin universal packaging for apples and other horticulture produce.
“Apart from the Kullu district, farmers bring apples in boxes without weighing them to apple markets in Shimla, Kinnaur, and other apple-producing areas. Traders buy apples by the weight of the boxes rather than by the kilogram. We held four to five meetings with farmers, dealers, carton producers, and other stakeholders and decided to limit apple packaging to one kilogram. Whatever boxes the farmers use will not affect the weight of the products they bring to us. We have set a maximum limit of 24 kg to protect farmers from traders and middlemen,” said Negi.