With the demand for exotic fruits rising, dragon fruit has emerged as a new favorite amongst today’s generation. Given its peculiar taste and medicinal value, the fruit has created a niche market for itself and many farmers are now trying their hands at growing this new crop. While the production of dragon fruit in India started in the early 90s, it was always limited to home gardens. It is only in recent years that the fruit has become popular and is being heavily exported to markets like Persian Gulf countries, the European Union, and the United States at a high value. As per a recent survey by the government, the country is now producing approximately 12,000 tonnes of dragon fruit every year.

 

At present, dragon fruit is mostly grown in Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra, Gujarat, West Bengal, Odisha, Andhra Pradesh, Kerala, and Andaman, and Nicobar Islands. But its low maintenance and good profitability are attracting farmers across the country. The plant belongs to the Cactaceae family and can grow in diverse climatic conditions, even surviving high temperatures. It is drought-resistant and hence, can be cultivated in areas with water supply issues as well. Another benefit of growing this fruit is that it can be grown on almost any soil. However, you would get the best results in sandy soil with good irrigation. Most importantly, the dragon fruit plant can sustain yield for more than 20 years. 

 

This fruit with leather-like skin and scaly spikes resembles a lotus and is thus referred to as ‘Kamalam’. It is extremely rich in antioxidants, vitamin C, fibrous content, and low in calories. These nutrients lend it strong digestive and cell repairing properties. In India, three main varieties of this fruit are grown- white flesh with pink skin, red flesh with pink skin, and white flesh with yellow skin. 

 

Growing dragon fruits can be profitable as the fruit can be sold at a high price per piece. The only challenge many farmers face is selling the product as there is low awareness. But with the right marketing channels, you can reach your potential customers and get a fair price. Read further to understand the various marketing channels for your dragon fruit business.

 


Where to sell your dragon fruits?

  • Grocery stores/Supermarkets – Earlier, the sale of dragon fruits was only limited to the exotic fruits section of big supermarket chains. As the awareness for the product is increasing, independent grocery stores are also stocking up this superfruit. This gives farmers a wider opportunity to sell their produce. The fruit is now being sold at a price even as high as Rs. 250-300 per kg. Grocery store owners and supermarket chains now prefer to sell this fruit as it has a longer shelf life, ensuring less wastage or losses for the retailer.
  • Farmers Markets – Most people visit the farmers’ markets for the freshness and high quality of the produce. It is also an experience for customers to connect with the farmer and learn more about the farming practices. Since less is known about dragon fruits, it attracts the attention of a large group of people. Selling at a farmers’ market can help you sell dragon fruit at a profitable price and create more awareness.
  • Sell on Farmsnation – Farmsnation is an online marketplace for farmers to sell their farm-fresh produce directly to the customers in their area and beyond. The platform understands that the traditional mandi format is highly unorganized and inefficient, leaving farmers with meager profits. Hence, Farmsnation allows you to list details about your farm, your product, pricing, and growing techniques and start selling directly to customers without a middleman pocketing your profit. Not just that you can also connect with other farmers selling different fruits on Farmsnation by clicking here.
  • Exporting to other countries – Export of dragon fruit from the Indian market is on the rise. While countries like Malaysia, Thailand, the Philippines, and Vietnam offer huge competition to Indian farmers exporting the fruit, India is slowly creating its consumer base in European, the Gulf countries, and the United States. For a farmer, the profit margin of exporting dragon fruit to international markets is way higher than selling it within the country. The government is also putting in special efforts to promote dragon fruit farming and help with export to other countries.

 


 


Apart from selling the fruit, many farmers today are also encashing on its popularity by selling cuttings of the plant at Rs 30-80 per plant. This is also an additional way of making a profit in the dragon fruit farming business. Farmers today are realizing the potential and profits of growing dragon fruit versus any other crop. If you are thinking of venturing into this business, now is the time!

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