Growing the Apple Sector
17 Oct 2016
Apples are a common fruit at Uzbek households, and this popularity is reflected in the national agriculture sector where 40% of fruit orchards are dedicated to growing them. It’s a sector with promise.
By publishing a guide on growing and propagating apples, the ‘Business Forum of Uzbekistan’ (Phase III)’ project undertaken by UNDP and the Chamber of Commerce and Industry will serve to further maximize this potential – one of several initiatives aiming to boost the national success and international marketability of Uzbekistan’s small and medium businesses.
“Uzbekistan has a suitable climate and location for growing apples – Central Asia is actually home for many wild apple forests,” shared Shukhrat Abrorov, the knowledge source behind the book and a lead expert in apple growth. “The main message farmers will get from this manual is that every farmer can produce more, better quality apples, by using modern knowledge and advanced techniques in apple growing.”
The manual intends to be as practical as possible – identifying major hurdles farmers might face when planting orchards, and detailing best locations for certain varieties to improve product quality and storability. It also explains how to fight common pests and disease.
Equally important is the advice offered about how farmers can best market their fruit, and make use of the land, to generate profit - “Many businesspeople think the size of the orchard is more important than the quality of the work. Every grower should clearly know how to best establish an orchard, as an investment for future years.”
The BFU project will make the manual available not just as a web-based document, but also in hard copies at seminars and events held in October 2016 in the Andijan, Fergana, Namangan, Tashkent and Samarkand regions.
It’s expected that, through the manual’s distribution, close to 600 farmers will be trained in the best ways of growing apples. This will help close a knowledge gap in this agricultural field.
“Making sure farmers have access to the right materials and guidelines is a major challenge,” said BFU project manager Bakhodir Bekov. “By raising practical knowledge and skills of farmers, agronomists and residents, more information will be given to helping to overcome challenges faced in fruit growing in general.”
Following this manual’s success, a similar product is being developed for cherries and will provide related advice to farmers.
The Business Forum of Uzbekistan works extensively to develop entrepreneurship, expand the marketing of national products into new directions, and encourage sustainable business growth. To learn more about the project, visit its webpage here.