Azerbaijan, Baku, Dec.7/ Trend F.Milad
Iran's Garden Owners Union have signed a contract with 17 cooperative companies to store 60,000 tons of citrus by the end of the current Iranian calendar year which began March 20, an official with the union said on Friday.
The country's annual citrus production currently stands at 4.6 million tons with 2.7 million tons of the aforementioned amount being consumed domestically and the balance exported, Fars News Agency quoted Enayatollah Biabani as saying.
Iran's garden products output is expected to rise by 10-35 per cent in the current Iranian calendar year (to end March 19, 2013), the head of Iran's Garden Owners Union Mojtaba Shadlou said on December 1.
Iran produced 7.5 million tons of fruits and other garden products in the previous calendar year, Shadlou said, the Mehr news Agency reported.
"At least three million tons would be added to Iran's total fruit and garden products output in the current year," he added.
Iran's fruit export value is expected to reach two billion dollars in the current calendar year.
Iran exported over 1.131 billion dollars' worth of agricultural products in the previous calendar year which ended March 19.
The value of exports of agricultural products was $64.1 million more than imports in the past calendar year which ended on March 19, the agriculture minister said in August.
Iran is the Middle East and North Africa's greatest producer of garden products and ranks eighth to ninth in the world.
Iran has been ranked between eight and tenth in global fruit production in different years. In the production of pomegranates and pistachios Iran ranks first, in dates and cherries third and fourth in the production of apples and walnuts and seventh in producing citrus fruits.
Fifty kinds of fruits are grown in Iran. The record for pomegranate production is 100 tons in a hectare of land, 146 ton for apples and 70 tons for oranges.