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Sri Lanka’s mango production records remarkable growth amidst increasing exports 

July 11, Colombo (LNW): Sri Lanka’s mango production is experiencing significant growth, projected to reach 102,410 metric tons by 2026. Since 1966, production has increased by 2% annually. In 2021, Sri Lanka ranked 34th globally with 97,890 metric tons, just behind Venezuela. Indonesia, China, and Mexico followed as the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th largest producers, respectively.

As per Volza’s Sri Lanka Export data, Mangoes export shipments from Sri Lanka stood at 7.1K, exported by 716 Sri Lanka Exporters to1, 498 Buyers.Sri Lanka exports most of it’s Mangoes to United States, United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia.

The top 3 exporters of Mangoes are India with 2,012,199 shipments followed by China with 468,021 and Peru at the 3rd spot with 166,938 shipments.

Over the past twenty years, the geographical distribution of mango cultivation in Sri Lanka has shifted considerably. Currently, 65.36% of mango cultivation is concentrated in nine districts. Although Kurunegala was historically the top producer, it has been surpassed by Anuradhapura due to significant growth in cultivation areas there and in Monaragala.

Sri Lanka’s fresh mango exports have grown notably since 2017, reaching 374 metric tons by 2022. Dried mango exports also increased, hitting 63 metric tons in 2022. However, seasonality remains a challenge for production. A coordinated approach involving all stakeholders can stabilize prices, reduce financial strain on growers, and ensure year-round availability of mangoes.

Promoting value-added products like mango pulp, jams, dried slices, and chutneys can help meet year-round demand while balancing the demand for fresh mangoes during off-seasons. Enhancing logistics and distribution networks, including cold chain facilities, can mitigate price disparities and ensure nationwide availability of mangoes. Establishing efficient market linkages, improving infrastructure, and buffer stocking are also crucial.

Successful farmer clusters, such as those under the ‘Nucleus Estates’ initiative by the Agriculture Sector Modernization Project (ASMP) and the Lanka Fruit and Vegetable Producers, Processors and Exporters Association (LFVPPEA), foster knowledge sharing, resource pooling, and economies of scale. These clusters ensure a consistent supply and amplify growers’ collective voice.

Sri Lankan mangoes have significant export potential in markets like the EU, USA, Middle East, and Australia. Meeting these markets’ quality standards requires improved orchard management, Good Agricultural Practices (GAP), Integrated Pest Management (IPM), and training on post-harvest handling and international regulations compliance. The IPS and LFVPPEA, with support from the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR), have been aiding commercial mango growers in tapping into export markets.

Mango production in Sri Lanka shows two distinct peaks annually due to varying climatic conditions and rainfall patterns. This seasonality leads to price fluctuations, with notable disparities across regions. For example, prices peaked at 252.1 Rs/kg in September 2023 due to limited availability, then dropped to 71.2 Rs/kg in December as the market became saturated.

 Price volatility creates financial challenges for growers and affects consumer purchasing behavior, particularly for low-income households. Despite investments in high-yielding cultivars, growers face unpredictable incomes due to market price fluctuations.

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