ANHDO Work on Post-Harvest, Agribusiness Linkages and Value Chain Studies:
Starting from 2011, as the new improved varieties of the NC came into bearing, ANHDO is collecting systematically all the data that characterize the fruit and building up a precious database.
Moreover panel test and field days are organized with traders and nursery growers to assess the market value of the varieties and determine which one should be recommended for multiplication.
ANHDO started to work actively in the post-harvest value chain. It conducted an in depth case study of the dry fruit value chain of almond and raisin and started to provide technical support to the laboratory of the Export Promotion Agency (EPA) and to two fruit processing factory based in Kabul.
ANHDO has identified the bottlenecks in the fruit the value chain that makes it difficult for the Afghan traders to access to the rich markets that require higher standards.
ANHDO is already positioning with a selected group of private partners to establish pilot value chains and ensure the traceability from the production to the market, with quality and hygiene control, proper packaging and possibly a brand name. ANHDO and its private partners will coordinate such market initiatives for: Fresh fruit value chain for high value domestic market to Kabul and other main cities; Grapes fresh and dry (raisin) value chain for high value domestic market and export; Almond value chain for export, in partnership with AAIDO and its private entrepreneurs.
ANHDO will also be actively engaged in the Citrus value chain.
ANHDO is fostering the renaissance of Citrus Industry in Afghanistan:
The citrus production of Afghanistan was destroyed during the war, but in the past few years we have seen a renaissance of the Citrus industry on stronger bases. ANHDO and ANNGO are at the center of this renaissance.
AHNDO was managing the National Collection of Citrus varieties since 2014 with 41 accessions including the best varieties of sweet oranges, mandarine, clementines which will be soon in the market. The very presence of this collection of germplasm is is giving is a great comparative advantage to the new born Afghan citrus industry as it is the best germplasm collection in the whole region. There are various suitable areas for growing citrus including Nangarhar, Kunar, Laghman and also Kandahar and other areas.
Moreover demand for Citrus fresh fruit is very high in the domestic and international market but it is covered by imports. According to a FAO survey the total Citrus imports and reached in 121,589 tons in 2010 with an estimated value of 42.7 Million USD. However most of the import is constituted by Kinnow from Pakistan. The Afghani, consumers have not tested yet the delicious, aromatic and colorful Navelina, Moro, Washington Navel, various Clementines, Valencia and other international varieties available in the National Collection (and neither have their neighbours of South and central Asia).
During the harvesting season November-2012 to February 2013 ANHDO organized panel tests of the new varieties for traders, orchard & nursery growers with enthusiastic results.
In 2011 ANHDO and PHDPII gathered all the stakeholders to form the Citrus Promotion Group (CPG), an informal stakeholders group for the purpose of coordinating all the initiatives related to Citrus, have unified strategy and maximize the resources. The CPG is composed today of 12 organizations, including the Biotechnology Laboratory, USAID projects, NGOs, farmers organizations, DAIL and MAIL Directorates. Through the CPG two successful campaign for monitoring the CTV (Citrus Tristeza Visurs) have been conducted in partnership and the National Collection and Mother Stock Nurseries are kept clean form viruses. Moreover, rootstocks tolerant to CTV have been introduced and are now under multiplication and dissemination.
In November 2012 ANHDO organized the first Citrus Workshop in Jalalabad (Nangarhar), with the participation of 60 persons from 13 public and private organizations. A SWAT analysts was conducted and the common strategy for the renaissance of the citrus industry further refined. One of the weaknesses noted in the workshop is the lack of commercial orchards due to the small size of the farms. This is an obvious constraint as both the domestic and international market demand. Standardized production, good packaging and grading, good distribution network, regulations, border agreements, etc.
In order to face these challenges ANHDO is proposing to the government and private sector there is need of a clear policy, market strategy and a strong partnership among public and private stakeholders.
It is worth to note that the recent joining of the Citrus Promotion Group by the NVDA (Nangahar Valley Development Authority) offers a good opportunity to fill the gaps. The NVDA is a state own agricultural enterprise and the largest landowner in Afghanistan and is willing to working in Citrus in partnership with the Citrus Promotion Group. ANHDO and ANNGO have recently finalized an agreement with the NVDA.
ANHDO and its partners are working to gather the best citrus producers in the area including the NVDA and go into the domestic high value market with strength with a proper quality control, package, traceability and a brand name.