Tuesday, December 5, 2023


    HomeHyderabadTribals and women in State find lucrative income in Hyderabad's custard apple...

    Tribals and women in State find lucrative income in Hyderabad’s custard apple cultivation

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    Custard apples are a type of fruit that is found in the forests of Adilabad and Mahbubnagar. They have become an important source of income for tribal communities and women in Telangana. The pulp of custard apples is in high demand, especially for making ice cream. Farmers in Rangareddy and other districts are now interested in growing different types of custard apples.
    According to Dr V Suchitra from the Konda Laxman Telangana State Horticultural University, the new varieties of custard apples have significant nutritional value and may even help fight cancer cells. The cultivation of custard apples has increased in recent times, with yields being eight to ten times higher per acre compared to before.
    Varieties like balanagar and NMK gold are popular among consumers and are available in October and November, which is when they are harvested. The fruit’s pulp is preserved in cold storage facilities at a temperature of minus 44 degrees Celsius.
    Custard apple cultivation is successful in the upland regions of Mahbubnagar and Narayanapet districts. Farmers in these areas collect custard apples and sell them in nearby towns, providing employment opportunities.
    The establishment of a custard apple food processing industry in Narayanpet has been beneficial for both farmers and local women. The industry has been operating profitably for four years and has created sustainable livelihoods for women.
    At the processing unit, custard apples are bought from farmers at Rs 20 per kilogram. From every six kilograms of fruit, one kilogram of pulp is extracted. The pulp is then supplied to Scoops ice cream, which has a growing demand for the product.
    The processing unit employs 75 women, with 25 women working in each shift. They operate three shifts per day to meet production demands. Women from surrounding villages also participate in this endeavor, creating economic impact in the region.
    The custard apple pulp used in ice creams generates substantial earnings, with each kilogram of pulp generating approximately Rs 200-250 in revenue. This initiative has been advantageous for women, providing them with a valuable source of income during the custard apple season.

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