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Status of litchi in India
- Nath, V., Kumar, G., Pandey, S. D., Gupta, A. K.
- Acta horticulturae 2018 no.1211 pp. 153-160
- Litchi, agroclimatology, altitude, edaphic factors, fruits, hills, industry, infrastructure, markets, prices, shelf life, China, Himalayan region, India
- Litchi occupies a prominent place in the fruit platter of Indian homes. India has diverse agro-climatic regions and litchi is grown throughout the foothills of the Himalayas, right from Tripura in the Northeast to Jammu in the North. However, the fruit remains available in the market only from April until August due to the very short harvest span of the crop. Very recently it has gained popularity among orchardists of even higher elevation of South India where the fruit matures in December and fetches better prices. The spread and growth of litchi has attained a pan-India phenomenon, recording about 3.8% growth annually over the last decade. Up to 2014-2015, the fruit has been grown in an area of about 84,200 ha with a total production of about 585,000 MT, second only to China. Still a lot of untapped areas exist in the country which shows potential for this crop but need precise management techniques. Based on edaphic conditions, NRC on litchi is attempting to locate such patches where litchi cultivation can be pushed with the available basket of technologies. Litchi growing in India is constrained mainly by short shelf life and insufficient market infrastructure. However, produce is mobilized to almost all parts of the nation from the production hubs. Large-scale adoption of available improved package of practices and knowledge to this crop will bring Indian litchi at the global map. This paper explains the current status of the litchi industry in India and a future roadmap for growth.