London: Indian mangoes are back in Britain's market after a seven month long ban by the European Union but unfortunately bulk of the stock being sold across UK is turning out to be rotten. Several dealers have expressed their disappointment over the current stock of mangoes.
According to the owner of one of London's most famous Indian shops - The Indian Spice Shop in Euston, bad quality fruits have ruined his business this season. The price of a box of a dozen Alphonsos' ranges from 12 pounds to 16 pounds (Rs 1600)
Harish Bhagwati told a leading daily that during peak mango season - from April to June, the Spice Shop imports around 500 boxes of mangoes which get sold very quickly. This year, he had to stop selling them after a flurry of complaints came from regular clients on the bad quality of the fruit.
Bhagwati said, "The alphonso I was selling is from Ratnagiri in Maharashtra. I had sold over 100 cases of the fruit but we received lots of complaints that the fruits were all rotten from inside. I had to refund all my customers. I sold one box of a dozen mangoes for 15 pounds (Rs 1,500). I have some boxes left but I'm telling my client that the quality is not guaranteed. Initially in the first two weeks of the mangoes arriving, they sold for 18 pounds (Rs 1,800) a dozen."
"I've decided not to sell Alphonso this year. Usually purchase my fruits from international markets suppliers in Heathrow. We are selling the other variety of mangoes - Kesar which arrived from Gujarat. They are of good quality and are priced at 15 pounds a case," he added.
According to the EU the pests were found in 207 consignments of fruits and vegetables from India imported into the EU in 2013.
Following which export of Indian mangoes to UK and EU were banned for seven months from May 2014 to January 2015 after EU's 28 member states endorsed a ban on import of certain fruits and vegetables from India.
The EU, however, voted in January 2015 to remove the ban on the import of mangoes from India.