Millionaires Go Bankrupt After Pine Nuts Price Crash

A significant dip in pine nuts prices has caused losses of millions of rupees to the farmers of the tribal districts of North and South Waziristan.

Nuts are a cash crop of Waziristan, where they have been produced for hundreds of years. Pine nuts from this part of the region are good in quality and high in demand. Over the years, the prices of pine nuts soared to up to Rs. 10,000 per kilogram, which left it out of the reach of a majority of consumers.

However, the price of the dry fruit took a nosedive in the last couple of weeks and dropped to an all-time low of Rs. 3000 per kilogram, leaving many of the dealers on the verge of bankruptcy.

According to one of the dealers, Yasin, the prices have been reduced by more than 50 percent in the past few weeks.

“Last year pine nuts were sold at Rs. 250,000 per 50 kilograms compared to this year’s price of Rs. 100,000 per 50 kilograms,” the dealer said.

He added that the high-quality pine nuts are being sold at Rs. 3,000 per kg as compared to its price of Rs. 8,000 per kg in September.

Yasin added that there were no buyers for the second and third-grade pine nuts at all.

“Many dealers are dependent on this cash crop of Waziristan, and they have incurred millions of rupees losses this season,” he added.

Speaking about the factors behind the decline in prices, the dealer said that the uncertain situation in Afghanistan had a negative impact on the import and export of the crop.

He also highlighted the difficulties they face in reaching the pine forests in Shawal, Lataka, and other parts of Waziristan due to a ban on movement following terrorist attacks.

“There are few buyers, so the prices have dropped massively,” he maintained.