Seeds may cost more, hints Agriculture minister

Seeds may cost more, hints Agriculture minister

The cost of seeds will be higher this year as the government, which is contemplating increasing their prices, has constituted a committee comprising vice chancellors of agriculture varsities.

Speaking to reporters on Friday, Agriculture Minister Umesh Katti said the committee would revive the prices of seeds after a discussion with private companies.

Pointing out that the price of Bt cotton seeds had been increased by about 30 per cent following the request by companies, he said the companies had been demanding an increase of Rs 200 for a packet of 440 gram of cotton seeds.

“After discussing with agriculture experts and vice chancellors of varsities, it has been decided that a packet, which was earlier sold for Rs 750, will be priced at Rs 950, while a packet of another variety of Bt cotton, priced Rs 650 earlier, will now cost Rs 830,” the minister said.

He said the committee was working out the price and the discussing issue with private companies.

Demand for Bt cotton

Katti said there was an increasing demand for Bt cotton seeds in the southern parts of Karnataka, where the rainfall has been good.

He said about 51,000 packets had been distributed in places like Mysore, Hassan and Chamrajnagar, and another 21,000 packets were yet to be distributed.

With the cultivation activities having begun in several parts of the State after the monsoon showers, the State government has promised that the seeds would be made available for cultivation at farmers’ information centres across the State within a fortnight.

He said Rs 500 crore worth of fertilisers had been procured to meet the requirement and added that every month, 29 lakh tonnes of fertiliser would be distributed among farmers.
Warning those trying to provoke farmers against the State government, he said action would be initiated against such persons. He urged farmers not to heed to such provocation.

Support price

With the farmers’ protest continuing unabated against the falling vegetable prices, the government has now announced support price for vegetables.

Accordingly, the State has announced Rs 500 as support price for onion, Rs 225 for tomato, Rs 550 for potato and Rs 315 for green chilly.

“If prices of these vegetables crash below the support price, the government will purchase the vegetables,” the minister said.

Call these numbers

Agriculture Minister Umesh Katti has said that in case farmers have a problem getting quality seeds and fertilisers, they may call him on his mobile 94838 18181 or his personal assistant at 94838 28282.

When Deccan Herald tried to contact the minister and his PA on Friday evening, both were “out of reach.”

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