Late monsoon shatters groundnut growers' hopes

NO TAKERS: Heaps of groundnut dumped at the APMC yard at Hiriyur in Chitradurga  district. DH Photo

Though the market price was low last year, the State had received bumper crop. But it was not the same this year. “Farmers’ woes seem to be never ending,” rued Eshwarappa, a groundnut grower from Sira.

The growers in Hiriyur, Molakalmuru, Challakere, Sira and Pavgad have witnessed low yield this year. The plants that could bear at least 50-60 strong nuts have a mere four to five nuts. “The investment on sowing and fertiliser has gone waste. Those who have invested on more hectares have suffered a lot,” he said.

According to Nijalingappa of Venukallugudda, he had sown one sack of groundnuts in three acres expecting at least 40 sacks but the yield is only 16 sacks. Similar was the plight of Chittanna of Kariyala village, Ramesh and Jayaramaiah of Chiranthanahalli, Sira taluk.

About 20,000 sacks of groundnut were bought to the Hiriyur market on Saturday. A minimum of Rs 2,400 and a maximum of Rs 3,800 has been mentioned per quintal in the tender. Last year, the minimum price was fixed at Rs 2,218 and Rs 3,155 was the maximum. Owing to heavy rainfall, there was no transaction at the market, said Market committee secretary Jayaram.

Crying foul, some of the farmers alleged that the large stock was priced Rs 2,300 only, stating they were of “poor quality.”

“The groundnuts brought to the market are substandard in quality. Even farmers agree about the quality. Although tender has been invited for Rs 3,800, the benchmark price is at Rs 2,600,” said a trader adding it is neither beneficial for traders.

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