12 agri products processing centers being activated

Kabul (Pajhwok): The Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation and Livestock (MAIL) has signed a contract with a private company for establishing a dozen of agriculture products’ processing and packaging centers, an official said on Saturday.

MAIL minister Asadullah Zamir, while signing the contract with Agroindust Company in Kabul, said buildings for the centers would be built in Nangarhar, Paktika, Kunduz and Balkh provinces at a cost of $1.6 million.

He said each centre would have the capacity to process seven metric tons of fruits a day. The centers would have facilities of washing, drying, arranging and packaging of fruits, he added.

Zamir said the company would equip the centers with advanced and modern equipment.

Collecting, drying, grading, washing, packaging as well as finding market for the products were main responsibilities of the company under the contract, the minister said.

Purchasing fruits from gardeners against fair prices and presenting them to the market was another responsibility of the Agroindust Company, Zamir added.

Around 45 percent of domestic fruits decayed each year due to the absence of processing facilities, the minister said.

Parwaiz Ghani, head of the Agroindust Company, promised to offer best services and process dry fruits with standard quality.

“We want to export Afghanistan’s dried and fresh fruits to India, Dubai and Russia,” he said, adding the company was also interested in playing a vital role in creating a central silo system, an agricultural bank and creating agriculture products’ processing systems in other provinces of the country.

According to MAIL, 19 agriculture products processing and packaging centers were opened last month in Kabul, Kandahar, Herat, Nangarhar, Balkh and Paktia provinces.

Agriculture officials said currently 86 agriculture products’ processing centers are operational across the country.

Source: Pajhwok Afghan News. Date: Aug 27, 2016