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The natural and climatic conditions of the country provide ample opportunities for the development of fruit and vegetable production and food processing industry. Unfortunately, institutional transformations in agriculture in the past have promoted significant growth of cereal production, but not fruit and vegetable growing. As a result, consumption of healthy food in Uzbekistan is constrained by its seasonal and spatial availability and considerable price differences throughout a year, especially for rural population during off-season, and only high-income earners consume fruits and vegetables. Inadequate consumption of fruit and vegetables is among leading risk factors for public health in Uzbekistan. The purpose of this research is to investigate the existing constraints and opportunities to improve the availability and accessibility of fruit and vegetables as a key determinant of healthy diet. What hinders activities of fruit and vegetable producers in Uzbekistan? What policies should be used to increase year-long fruit and vegetable supply in Uzbekistan? A tabular analytical technique was used to qualitatively analyze the existing constraints for efficient fruit and vegetable production. Using a structured interview method, a sample size of 100 fruit/vegetable farms was selected randomly and disproportionally based on the master frame lists provided by the local authorities. The area covered included five districts in Tashkent province. Despite favorable geographical and climatic conditions, production of fruit and vegetables is constrained by various factors such as imperfect input and output markets, distribution system failures, low consumer demand, problems in financing and credit. The mechanisms to improve the current situation include reduction of bureaucracy and abuse of powers by public authorities, shift from planned system to market-oriented system of agricultural production, removal of export restrictions, better marketing research, knowledge capacity development, investment in new equipment, technologies and infrastructure, development of agricultural extension services and more effective work of associations and councils.


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