The grading of fruits and vegetables is considered to be one of the most important operations among the producers as it adds value to the products and provides the better economic returns. Whereas, the manual grading is one of the expensive and time consuming process. The process gets affected due to the non-availability of labors during the peak seasons.
Shri Madan Mohan Patidar, of Bhopal produces 250 tonnes of onion from his 15 acres of land. Manually, if a person grades 500 kg of onions per day, then 500 man-days would be required for grading 250 tonnes of onion at a total labor cost of Rs. 2 lakhs (Rs. 400/man-days).
The ICAR-Central Institute of Agricultural Engineering, Bhopal demonstrated its Fruit-cum-Vegetable Grader developed under the Mera Gaon Mera Gaurav Programme to Shri Patidar for the grading of onion, sweet lemon and guava. Up on being satisfied by the grader, Shri Patidar got the grader installed for grading of 250 tons of onions in the farm. The capacity of the grader developed by ICAR-CIAE, Bhopal is 2 t/h. Thus, the grader could grade around 250 tonnes of onion in 16 days considering 8 hours of operations per day.
Due to this, the grader could help in saving the time, labor and cost of grading with efficient grading. On using the grader, the cost of operation of the grader is Rs. 300/tonnes which makes a total cost of Rs. 75,000/ for grading of 250 tonnes of onion. Hence, the grader helped Shri Patidar in saving Rs. 1,25,000/- in cost (63%). The cost of onion without grading is Rs. 400/quintal. However, the price obtained for graded onion is Rs. 700/quintal.
Shri Patidar gained the net benefit of Rs. 7,50,000/- from 250 tonnes of graded onion. The graded uniform size onions fetched more prices in the market and earned benefit. Thus, the overall benefit from marketing of graded onion using the ICAR-CIAE Fruit-cum-Vegetable Grader for the farmer is Rs. 7,50,000/- apart from considerably saving the time and labor with efficient grading.
(Source: ICAR-Central Institute of Agricultural Engineering, Bhopal)