Thousands of years ago people of the Middle East & Indus Valley have used Dates as a staple food only for the people residing near Indus valley. After that, Dates fruit was also introduced in Mexico, California, and other parts of the world, and it is considered a staple food for people all around the globe.
In our religion Islam, and other religions of the world, Dates have specific importance. Dates are mentioned 20 times in the Holy Quran and more than 50 times in the Bible. Dates are used in Iftar in the holy month of Ramadan. In the Christian religion, they use Date Palm leaves in ‘Palm Sunday’. Hindu use dried Date in their special religious days. Jewish use leaves of Date as Lulav in the Jewish holiday of Sukkot. Date Nut Bread is a type of cake that is very famous in the United States & Dates also use as a Dessert in different forms.
Also read ???? Dates of Khairpur, Sindh – A Concise Report
Pakistan was the 6th largest Dates fruit producer country in the world in 2011. Khairpur Mir’s city of Sindh province is the largest Dates Producer in the entire country. There are many varieties of Dates Cultivated in Khairpur Mir’s such as Aseel, Karbala, Gajjar, Kurah, Naqul & Tota.
Aseel is a main variety of Date fruit which is 80% to 90% cultivated in Khairpur Mir’s. Date fruit was also exported to other countries of the world. The major export markets are India, Germany, the UK, the USA, Canada, Nepal, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, and Australia. In 2011 India was the largest importer of Pakistan’s Dates fruit. But nowadays due to the law and order situation, Pakistan faces many challenges to export it.
A cultivator is also faced with many challenges within the country. Unfortunately, It has been ignored from many decades from High ups of Pakistan in terms of advancement of technology, limitations of markets, legal procurement, subsidy to Dates grower, new techniques, and lack of research and development. The government of Pakistan should provide subsidies to the grower for trial bases to cultivate international variety such as Ajwa, Safawi, Medjool, and Barhee to increase date export opportunities and these varieties are already in high market prices in the world. Besides that, Date grower in Pakistan needs technology and techniques to achieve its potential.