Water shortage poses real risk to Iran’s pistachio hub
Baku, Azerbaijan, Oct. 19
By Khalid Kazimov – Trend:
Water shortage has caused a dramatic fall in the output of Iran’s pistachio production hub, Kerman Province.
Business magnate Asadollah Asgaroladi has warned that the pistachio output of the province is dramatically falling and the province may lose its capability for producing pistachio within the next 10 years, Tasnim news agency reported.
While the officials were expecting 250,000 tons of pistachio over the current year, the province harvested only 200,000 tons.
Dry weather conditions were reportedly among the main reasons behind the fall in the production level.
The province over the current year has exported 15,000 tons of pistachio and one kilo of the product valued $8.
Kerman once accounted for 70 percent of the country’s pistachio production, but currently the southeastern province accounts for only 30 percent.
Observers suggest that the severe water crisis has caused the drop in pistachio growing in the province as groundwater withdrawal in Kerman is almost three times as much as the global red line.
Water crisis has reportedly caused a 40 percent drop in the pistachio output in Kerman over the past years.
The value of Iran’s pistachio exports declined by 40 percent to $198 million during the first five months of current fiscal year (started on March 21), year-on-year.
In the meantime, the country’s pistachio exports slumped by 45 percent to 19,000 tons.
However, pistachio is still among Iran’s top agricultural products being exported overseas.