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Who thought that there would be a thunderstorm, gusty winds, dust storm and unseasonal rain in the summer? This year, the vagaries of nature have caused a lot of damage in many parts of India. Crops were harshly hit, and this caused a great damage to farmers. In the scorching and sweltering heat of summer, there is one thing that people love and enjoy the most, and people wait for summers for this one thing only - mangoes! Mangoes can make every Indian’s mouth water in the summer and they also greatly satisfy our thirst in the summer heat. But who would have thought that this year, the taste of the mangoes would be so unpleasant?

This year, heavy dust storm and thunderstorm followed by unseasonal rain have greatly damaged the production of mangoes in many parts of India. Natural changes harshly hit mango farmers this year. They were expecting a bumper crop of mangoes this year, but the constant weather change harshly hit their expectations, and damaged mango harvests. As a result, there was a lower production of mangoes than they expected. The weather conditions have also caused a delay in mangoes reaching the market.

Uttar Pradesh is known for being the famous mango belt in India. Situated on the outskirts of Lucknow, Malihabad, which is very famous for the production of the king of fruits, is also greatly affected by the dust storm and unseasonal rain, which is causing massive damage to mango harvests and mango farmers. This has left mango growers very unhappy.

According to a report by India Today, Haji Kaleemullah Khan, known as Mango Man, stated, "Mango production has declined by 80 per cent in the last few years due to worsening weather conditions and other reasons. In the last few days we have suffered a huge loss because of high velocity winds. A big proportion of mango harvest this year has been damaged with most fruits falling off before harvest due to gusty winds. This time there will be a crisis of mangoes in the market and it will be a nightmare for poor and middle class people to buy mangoes from the market because of increased rates."

Before the unexpected weather changes, mango farmers were expecting a high yield of mangoes this year. Earlier, before the weather conditions went wrong, Haji Kaleemullah Khan said that "it is the best crop I have had in my 70 years of mango farming." He further stated that "mango crop sees flowering as winter recedes. It is a very crucial time for the mango crop as delicate flowers need care, and they grow best when there is no major non-seasonal rain or hail storm coming their way. If the flowers remain intact, it will be a full bloom crop. Expecting a huge production of mangoes this year, Mango Man had said, "initially, the price of mangoes may be quite high, but in the later days it won't be more than Rs. 10 or Rs. 15 per kilogram."

Earlier, President of Mango Growers Association of India, Insram Ali said that the mango harvests in Malihabad as well as in other parts of Uttar Pradesh are very good. He further stated that "the government should make adequate electricity and water supply arrangements in the mango belts here in order to sustain the crop."

Everything was going perfect, and mango farmers were expecting a bumper crop, predicting that mango prices would be very low this year, due to the great production of mangoes. But suddenly, things went wrong and weather conditions worsened badly. Severe dust storms, thunderstorms and unseasonal rain, not only destroyed the mango crop, but also destroyed the hopes of mango farmers and mango lovers!

There are few other factors that caused damage to the crop: for perfect growth of mangoes, a certain temperature is needed, but due to the rain, there was a drop in temperature, which affected the growth of the crop. Extra rounds of pest control are also a factor in damaging the crop.

These worsened conditions have not only affected mango farmers but mango lovers also. Due to delay in mangoes reaching the market, the thirst of the mango lovers had already been greatly increased. As the mango reached the market, this had at least provided some relief to all the mango lovers. But this relief was transient as the shortage of mangoes in the market made the costs very high.

Mangoes are the fruit that every mango lover waits for in the summer. They are the saving grace in the scorching summer heat. But with the crazy price rise and shortage, they tasted bitter-sweet didn’t they?

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