A special discussion was held under the patronage of President Maithripala Sirisena at the President’s Official Residence in Colombo on Monday regarding steps that should be taken to protect local fruit farmers.
During this meeting, attention focused on the challenges faced by local fruit farmers as a result of the importation of fruits into the country, and further discussed about the methods which should be followed in this regard.
It was broadly discussed ways and means of helping the local fruit dealers and the President emphasised the importance of providing facilities for their industries to proceed further. The President also explained the need of a programme to motivate people on consuming local fruits with taste and nutrition value to enhance the level of health of people. He instructed the related sections to implement an island wide program immediately to introduce an alternative methodology and techniques to keep the excess harvest fresh during the period of harvest and after storage. It was also discussed about the steps to be taken to reduce the damage caused by insects to the crops.
Minister Rishad Bathiudeen, Industry and Commerce Ministry Secretary K.D.N. Ranjith Ashoka, Secretary for the Ministry of Agriculture D. Wijeyratne, and other secretaries of ministries and government officials were present in this event.