Karachi: On March 22, Consul General JoAnne Wagner inaugurated a state-of-the-art cold storage facility for vegetable exporters. This facility was established through support by the U.S.-Pakistan Partnerships for Agricultural Market Development (AMD), funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).
The AMD project is working to strengthen the high-value and off-season vegetable sector in Pakistan by partnering with private sector investors. This support has helped upgrade seven centralized grading, packing and cold storage hubs in Sindh and Punjab. Such centralized hubs are necessary for overcoming the constraints facing the vegetable sector in Pakistan, including lack of post-harvest handling facilities for grading, sorting, and packaging.
“These facilities will help producers increase shelf life, reduce losses from spoilage and improve the overall quality of their produce,” Consul General Joanne Wagner said.
Also present on the occasion were Michael Hryshchyshyn, USAID Director for Sindh and Balochistan, Waheed Ahmed, Patron-in-Chief and Chairman, Pakistan Fruits and Vegetable Association (PFVA), and Dr. Falak Naz, Director General, Department of Plant Protection, Government of Pakistan.
U.S.-Pakistan Partnerships for Agricultural Market Development works to improve the ability of Pakistan’s commercial agriculture and livestock sectors to compete better in international and national markets in four target product lines; meat, high-value and off-season vegetables, mangoes, and citrus. This partnership acts as a catalyst for development and investment in the target product lines, helps improve the quality and increase the quantity of exportable agricultural produce, and promotes cooperation among farmers, processors, exporters, and buyers of Pakistani agricultural products in international markets. This is resulting in increased income and generating employment opportunities for the citizens of Pakistan.
For more information on USAID programs in Pakistan, please visit the following web site: www.usaid.gov/pakistan/