Logistics Middle East

Maersk unlocks agro export potential in India with cold chain solution

For the first time ever, Maersk transports chillies from Uttar Pradesh to Jebel Ali


Maersk, a leading global integrated logistics company, recently successful­ly delivered its Ërst end-to-end shipment of freshly produced ‘Green Chillies’ from Varanasi to Jebel Ali, United Arab Emirates (UAE) within a duration of nine days. The company worked closely with Agricultur­al and Processed Food Exports Developmen­t Authority (APEDA), the apex organisati­on under the Ministry of Commerce & Industry, responsibl­e for the export promotion of agricultur­al products, to enable trade opportunit­ies in the state via land & sea routes. The delivery is a testament to Maersk’s efforts to unlock the agro-trade potential in Uttar Pradesh and expanding across the country by leveraging end-to-end coldchain logistics solutions.

The eastern part of Uttar Pradesh (Varanasi region) comprising of five districts – Ghazipur, Jaunpur, Chandauli, Mirzapur and Sant Ravidas Nagar which are some of the top producers of fresh fruits & vegetables, such as green chillies, okra, bitter gourd, green peas, brinjal, mango, guava etc. present an immense opportunit­y for the farmers and entreprene­urs in and around the region to boost its agro-exports. Considerin­g these enormous trade prospects offered by the region, APEDA is in the process of setting up Agri-export hubs in these districts along with soon-to-be set up project office to fast-track the co-ordination & facilitati­on of all activities.

Steve Felder, managing director, Maersk South Asia, said “The economy of Uttar Pradesh is predominan­tly agrarian and performanc­e of agricultur­e and allied activities such as horticultu­re, animal husbandry, dairying and fisheries are critical in determinin­g the growth rate of the state. Additional­ly, due to its favourable climatic and geographic­al conditions, the agricultur­al produce from the state especially Varanasi region enjoys a preferred demand in the global market which is the reason the government has plans to make it an export trade hub. Our initiative to take local produce to global market is in-line with our aim to be a global integrator of container logistics connecting and simplifyin­g trade for the farmers & entreprene­urs across the region.”

The shipment was loaded at the facility under the supervisio­n of the company’s Reefer expert and flagged-off by the chief guest, Mr. Paban Kumar Borthakur, Chairman, APEDA. Throughout the journey from Varanasi to Jebel Ali, leveraging the Remote Container Management (RCM) technology, the temperatur­e of the cargo was accurately maintained at the temperatur­e recommende­d by the Reefer expert with proper tracking of the container movement and spot-on co-ordination with various stakeholde­rs involved in the project. Sensing the tight schedule of the shipment cycle due to short shelf-life of fresh produce & non-availabili­ty of export-quality packing material at Varanasi, Maersk ensured the deployment of an additional driver for inland transporta­tion.

By delivering on ensuring that the chillies reached its destinatio­n in top quality, by ensuring on-time delivery and by taking responsibi­lity of various phases of the logistics, Maersk went all the way in making sure its customers were satisfied by the offering from the company.

Future opportunit­ies in the region

APEDA also organised an export promotion programme & Buyer-Seller Meet (BSM) attended by more than 100 farmers from Mumbai, Kolkata, Hyderabad & Uttar Pradesh during the first half of 2019, to provide a platform to link farmers to exporters. The platform provided a chance to the exporters to understand the potential of the region, quality of vegetables & fruits produced so that they could facilitate the right infrastruc­ture. Furthermor­e, the government also facilitate­d Vegetables And Fruits Exporters Associatio­n (VAFA), Mumbai to sign an MOU with four Farmers Producers Organisati­ons (FPOs) for sourcing of fresh vegetables & fruits for exports to internatio­nal markets. The produce of the first trial shipment consolidat­ed from the FPOs has been processed & packed at CONCOR Cargo Facility, Rajatalab, Varanasi which was inaugurate­d by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi in July 2018.

As the future enquiries are in pipeline with an additional route (rail) option, the target commodity is wide-ranging (green chilies, okra, bitter gourd, green peas, brinjal, mango, guava etc.) with focused efforts from the company and government to ensure this to be a year-round movement. The company is in touch with the relevant government stakeholde­rs to help realise the true export potential of the region.

 ??  ?? Maersk exported chillies from Uttar Pradesh to Jebel Ali.
Maersk exported chillies from Uttar Pradesh to Jebel Ali.

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