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ISLAMABAD: United States Agency for International Development (USAID) held a mango gala on Tuesday to ensure that Pakistani ex­­ports — especially vegetables and fruits — are competitive in the international market.

USAID is helping local mango sector exports in new markets while ensuring compliance with international grading standards and export protocols.

Addressing the mango sector stakeholders at the annual gala here on Tuesday, USAID Mission Director, Jerry Bisson was confident that by facilitating infrastructure upgrades, introducing new technologies and promoting market opportunities, “we will increase exports to high-end markets, improving revenue for Pakistani mango farmers and exporters”.

The mango gala brought together stakeholders from the public and private sectors to investigate trends and opportunities, recognise local farmers’ innovations in, and reaffirm USAID’s commitment towards uplifting Pakistan’s mango production sector.

Under the project’s grant programme, USAID has provided 13 state-of-the-art mango graders which be­­came operational in 2017 and will be utilised during the 2018 production season to grade export quality mangoes.

USAID launched the US-Pakistan Part­nership for Agri­cultural Market Development in February 2015 to improve the marketing capacity of four Pakistani value chains; meat, high value and off-season vegetables, mangoes, and citrus.

Published in Dawn, August 8th, 2018