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‘We are the pickle kings of the world’: India becomes the biggest exporter of ‘Cucumbers, Gherkins’

According to the latest developments, India has emerged as the world’s pickle king. During last year’s financial year, the exports of agricultural processed products, including pickling cucumbers, gherkins, and cornichons, exceeded $200 million. The country has taken the lead in cucumber and gherkin exports worldwide with this development. According to media reports, India exported 1,23,846 metric tonnes (MT) of cucumber and gherkins with a value of $114 million during April-October 2021. With a value of $223 million, India shipped 2,23,515MT of cucumbers and gherkins in 2020-21.

India meets 15% of global demand
India has 51 companies that produce and export gherkins. They are exported in two forms, packed in drums and in ready-to-eat packs. In the world’s gherkin market, India alone meets 15 percent of the demand. The plants of India meet international standards and are designed to meet the needs of foreign countries. Pickled cucumbers are processed and exported by the states of Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Telangana in India. They are exported to over 20 countries. These include countries such as the United States, France, Japan, South Korea, Canada, Israel, Germany, among others.

Contract farming for gherkins
Around 90,000 small and marginal farmers in India grow gherkins under contract farming, according to the report. This results in an annual production area of 65,000 acres. Gherkin farmers earn Rs 80,000 on average with a net income of Rs 40,000.

Gherkins are a 90-day crop, so farmers grow two crops per year. In addition, the Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA) has taken a number of initiatives, such as the development of infrastructure, product promotion on the global market, and the implementation of food safety management systems in processing units. According to the report, all gherkin manufacturing and exporting companies are either ISO, BRC, IFS, FSSC 22000 and HACCP certified or possess all certifications.


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